Episode 3: The Monster Mash – Frankenstein at 200

As we celebrate Frankenstein’s 200th birthday this year, this episode explores how Mary Shelley’s novel is not one story but many overlapping and sometimes competing ones—the story of the novel’s creation during a chilly summer in Geneva; the story of Mary and Percy Shelley, artists, lovers, iconoclasts; the story of Mary’s many revisions of the text and Percy’s possible additions; the story of the countless adaptations and sequels which have given us a visual language (Boris Karloff, Elsa Lanchester, Fred Munster, and our personal favorite, Peter Boyle) to supplement and at times surpass the novel. These overlapping and competing stories are predicted by the form of the novel itself, which contains at least three stories in one: Walton’s frame narrative, Victor Frankenstein’s story of scientific aspiration and hubris, and the Monster’s tale of rejection at the novel’s core. We’ll excavate these tales, have a chat with Dr. Giffen Maupin about friendship and stitches and Romanticism, and explore the sweet mystery of life … on this monstrous episode of THE BOOK LIGHT, a classic books podcast, where we read the books so you’ll want to.