Frankenstein Allusions

We use allusions all the time even in a modern world. They are intrinsically woven into our fabric of life. Just the other day, I overheard one in a camera shop. “I thought he had emailed me a picture but it was a Trojan Horse (virus related). This is an allusion to Homer and the Trojans.

We all grew up with the allusion of “He tells so many fibs his nose should be growing” this is an allusion to Pinocchio. This was an allusion I have heard parents and teachers say without them realizing what it actually is.

There are many types and styles of illusions. These are unwittingly attributed to many life situations as life evolves.

In Shelley’s Frankenstein allusions are common though they can be subtle unlike the appearance of Frankenstein himself.

Shelley’s Frankenstein
Whilst it is universally accepted that the monster created is called Frankenstein the reality is that it is not his name. Victor Frankenstein was the creator and the monster is referred to as “creature” etc. In Frankenstein, Victor is the creator of life and the monster becomes a victim with Victor cursed until death.

Religious Symbolism
Shelley uses many allusions which on closer analysis show up clearly. In the story, Frankenstein watches those he love die around him whilst he remains. An allusion here is to a poem written by Coleridge whereby the characters share a parallel life that is cursed. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner is a poem where the mariner is cursed to live whilst his crew dies.

The curse was the result of killing an albatross with redemption coming when the Ancient Mariner repents. There are clear Christian overtones here

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