English 41 - Winter, 2024

Introductory Topics in Literature & Media

Topic: How to Make a Monster: Frankenstein on Page and Screen

Class Information

Instructor: Connally, Kenneth
CRN: 44562
Time: TR 9:00-10:20am
Location: Olson 105
GE Areas: Writing Experience Visual


Topic: How to Make a Monster: Frankenstein on Page and Screen

Since its publication in 1818, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein has inspired countless artworks in a variety of media, but its most prominent impact has been on film, where James Whale's Frankenstein and the many other film adaptations that followed have shaped the public's understanding of the novel's characters and themes--arguably more so than the text of the novel itself has. In this class, we will read Shelley's novel alongside its influences and the films it inspired, both direct adaptations like Whale's Frankenstein and more loosely derivative works like Vincenzo Natali's Splice. Along the way, we will consider Frankenstein's relationship to Romanticism, the sublime, science fiction, horror, tragedy, nineteenth-century radicalism and feminism, Orientalism, biotechnology, artificial intelligence, and more.


Student-Led Discussion: 5%
Quizzes: 10%
Final Exam: 10%
Journals: 15%
Short Essays and Revisions: 20%
Term Paper: 40%


Frankenstein (Norton Critical ed.), Mary Shelley
Prometheus Bound, Aeschylus
Destroyer, Victor LaValle