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Frankenstein Study Questions and Answers

written by: Trent Lorcher • edited by: SForsyth • updated: 1/17/2012

Impress your family, friends, and teachers by answering these Frankenstein study questions and answers.

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    Use these Frankenstein questions and answers to review for the test and prepare for class discussions. These are meant to supplement your reading of the novel, not replace the actual reading. I garuntee you won't do very well answering these questions without having read the book first!

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    Question 1) How does Victor's life before going to Ingolstadt influence his decisions regarding the monster?

    • Up until the time he leaves, Victor is surrounded by beauty--Elizabeth is beautiful, his mother is beautiful, Switzerland is beautiful. Victor has been raised to associate physical beauty with goodness.
    • The monster, on the other hand, is not beautiful. He is grotesque. His appearance would shock most individuals, especially those who associate beauty with goodness.
    • The death of Victor's mother influences Victor's obsession with animating life. He understands the pain associated with losing a loved one and wants to eradicate this pain.

    Question 2) What is Mary Shelley's purpose in alluding to Coleridge's Rime of the Ancient Mariner throughout the novel?

    • Shelley does more than just allude to it. She uses the same structure to tell her story. Shelley may be giving hints as to the theme of her novel by alluding to Coleridge's poem. For further treatment of this subject, see part three of this study guide.

    Question 3) Give examples of irony in the narrative.

    • Situational irony: Frankenstein's goal is to create life. Instead, he creates a monster that kills people. Ooops!
    • Verbal irony: The monster tells Victor he will be with him on his wedding night. What he really means is he will be with Elizabeth on his wedding night, strangling her with his bare hands. I don't even think he brought a gift.
    • Dramatic irony: The reader (and Victor) know that Justine Moritz is innocent of murder. Nobody else does.

    Question 4) What are the origins of Shelley's novel?

    • Legend says that Shelley and her poet friends were hanging around the campfire having a contest who could tell the scariest story (there's some 19th-century fun for ya!). Mary Shelley won. It was so good that her friends encouraged her to write a novel.
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    Had Enough? No?

    Bonus Questions:

    How is Frankenstein an example of Romantic literature?

    • The novel contains elements of the supernatural, the dangers of technology, the importance of nature, and the individual's quest for glory.

    To whom does the monster compare himself?

    • The monster compares himself to Adam, perhaps as a means of guilting Victor into making him a mate, without an Eve. He also compares himself to Satan from Milton's Paradise Lost. His knowledge of literature exceeds that of most humans. When you're ugly and have no friends, I suppose it's natural to read a lot.