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How can I tie Frankenstein into world literature?I'm working on my world literature...

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shkr27 | Student, Grade 11 | Honors

Posted May 22, 2012 at 3:00 PM via web

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How can I tie Frankenstein into world literature?

I'm working on my world literature assignment 2 for my ib class and I want to tie Frankenstein with The House of Bernarda Alba by Frederico Garcia Lorca somehow; or Frankenstein with The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka. This needs to be creative somehow, and I don’t know how to possibly tie them together interestingly.

 

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wordprof | College Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted May 22, 2012 at 4:43 PM (Answer #1)

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Comparative literature is a fruitful field for imaginative essays on how literatures connect with each other.  Obviously, these three pieces do not share many features superficially—genres, themes, even periods.  But what can be discussed is how each author makes use of the available literary tool to build characters (Dr. Frankenstein is a “character” as well as his “monster”, an artificial creation of Mary Shelley).  Giving some allowance for translations, you could look carefully at what order each author uses to reveal character—look at Gregor Samsa, for example, and how Kafka abruptly introduced him in media res, while Lorca gradually forms his characters.  In other words, examine the structures of each piece, even the “syntax” of character construction, to illuminate how these authors, like Dr. Frankenstein himself, “construct” characters.  At what point do the characters reveal their “human” traits?  So, if you compare the building of Dr. Frankenstein's monster with the "building" of a fictive character, you will be doing comparative scholarship.

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