Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

200 Years of Frankenstein: Welcome

Welcome to 200 Years of Frankenstein

2018 marked the bicentennial anniversary of Mary Shelley's famous Gothic novel Frankenstein; or The Modern Prometheus. Although over 200 years old Frankenstein and The Monster continue to inspire contemporary culture in film, art, science, television programs, video games and even children's literature. This guide is a curation of resources for fans or researchers to all things Frankenstein from how it all started to 200 years later. 

 

Book Cover

Never read Mary Shelley's Frankenstein or The Modern Prometheus? Click the book link for free public domain access to the full novel online.

 

Prometheus

Who is this "Prometheus" guy in the subtitle of Frankenstein? Click this image for a quick bio from Ancient History Encylopedia 

Science

Science Magazine Cover

The Long Shadow of Frankenstein:  Science Magazine's January 12, 2018 issue contains articles on how the science behind Frankenstein is still essential reading for scientists today. This link also has other science related articles about Frankenstein. 

The Frankenstein Atlas: The Frankenstein Atlas is a literary mapping exploring Mary Shelley's novel from a spatial perspective. This website contexts users to maps, gazetteers and an overall pedagogical approach to Frankenstein.  

The Frankenstein Moon: Mary Shelley had written that the moonlight shining into her bedroom window stoked her imagination as she wrote Frankenstein. A team of astronomers investigate the claim in this essay from NYPL collection.  

Book Covers

Frankenstein Cover

Vintage, 2011 

Frankenstein Cover

University of Chicago Press, 1982 

Frankenstein Cover

Tark Classic Fiction, 2008

Frankenstein Cover

Puffin, 2011 

Penguin Classics, 2018 

Frankenstein Cover

Penguin Classics, 2003 

Frankenstein Cover

Penguin, 2014 

Frankenstein Cover

Harpers Collins Canada, 2018 

Librarian

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley

Mary Wollstonecraft ShelleyMary Shelly painting

The creator of Frankenstein 

Many people often ask how (and why) a 19-year old women wrote a tale that would terrify the world. 

The Life and Times of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (1797-1851) : Biography of Shelley's life from Encyclopedia of World Biography Onine 

200 Year Old Nightmare : The idea for Frankenstein came to Shelley in a nightmare. USC Professor  Leo Braudy explains the nightmare in this short video. 

Frankenstein and The Vampyre: A Dark and Stormy Night : Hosted by Alexander Street Database is a Oxford Scientific Films Documentary about the life of Mary Shelley and the creation of Frankenstein. 

Chronology of Mary Shelley's Life: From Romantic Circles, a completed chronology of Mary Shelley's life. Includes significant events from 1797- 1835 and posthumous.  

From The National Theatre: a short biographically video on Mary Shelley's life and setting the stage for the creation of Frankenstein. 

200 Years of Culture

Frankenreads: This page is a resource collection created by The Keats-Shelley Association of American in celebration of the 200th anniversary of Frankenstein. The collection includes resources for teaching Frankenstein, sources for Frankenstein, 19th- century reactions and Frankenstein in media and culture. 

 

 

Life Magazine Cover  Life Magazine special edition Frankenstein; The Man, The Monster, The Legacy : Includes stories of Prometheus, Mary Shelley, films and literature based on Frankenstein and The Monster. Great collection of images throughout the magazine.  

Literature

Crash Course Literature: Frankenstein: This edition of Crash Course Literature is a fun short video discussing the Frankenstein novel with some fun facts and often confused myths about the story. This page also includes other resources on Frankenstein as well.  

Defining the Monster: This video is a lecture presented by Heather Keenleyside, professor of English from the University of Chicago. Keenleyside talks about the novel's context in the age of enlightenment and contemporary society's approach to issues of monstrosity. 

Literary Analysis: From the Gale Group database Exploring Novels is a essay on the themes and construction of Frankenstein. 

Writing Frankenstein

British Cover

Image from British Library/ London/ Bridgeman Images 

The Shelley- Godwin Archive : This archive provides primary source documents including digitized manuscripts of Frankenstein and the evaluation of each draft. Includes chronology of events in writing and publishing Frankenstein.

 

biblion logo          NYPL logo

Frankenstein The Afterlife of Shelley's Circle : Brought to you by Biblion and the New York Public Library is a curation of stories and essays involving Mary Shelley and Frankenstein. If you download the Boundless Library App you can immerse yourself in the New York Public Library's Frankenstein Collection and view source documents and gallery images in the collection. You can watch a quick video explaining the Boundless Library by clicking on the Biblion Logo.  

The Eerie Gravestone Where Frankenstein's Story Began: Time magazine article discussing how Mary's mother's gravestone helped inspire the story for Frankenstein  

Movie Posters

Poster 2

Lobby card for Frankenstein (1951). Universal Studios. Retrieved from http://commons.m.wikimedia.org  

Poster 3

Reproduction of poster for the film: I Was a Teenage Frankenstein (1957). American International Pictures. Retrieved from http://commons.m.wikimedia.org

Poster 3

Poster for Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948) Studios. Retrieved from http://commons.m.wikimedia.org  

Poster 5

Lobby card for the film Frankenstein (1931) Universal Studios. Retrieved from http://commons.m.wikimedia.org  

Film

The Monster

Videographic Frankenstein: An Exhibition of Creative and Scholarly Video:  Curated by Shane Denson Professor of Film and Media Studies at Stanford University. This is a digital video presentation of research studying the visual legacy of Frankenstein. Presentation can be viewed here. 

List of Frankenstein Films, Plays and Television:  Wikipedia list of Frankenstein films 

Frankenstein Films Webpage: This webpage includes information on Frankenstein adaptations in theater and film. Specifically Universal Studios and Hammer Studios. Includes suggested reading list of books on the subject of Frankenstein films.  

Photo Citations

In order of appearance from left to right: 

  •  Shelley, M. (2009). Frankenstein, or, The modern Prometheus. New York, NY: Holt, Rinehart and Winston. Cover illustration by Cliff Neilsen. Personal Photograph by Lisa McGough  
  • ​Caussiers, J. (1819). Prometheus Carrying Fire [Painting found in Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid]. Retrieved from http://commons.m.wikimedia.org.
  • Stump, S. J. (n.d.). Unknown woman, formerly known as Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley [Painting found in National Portrait Gallery, London]. Retrieved from http://commons.m.wikimedia.org.
  • Shelley, M., & H. (1886). Frankenstein, or, The modern Prometheus. London: George Routledge & Sons. Book Cover Image from 1886 publication of Frankenstein. Retrieved from British Library. Part of the Public Domain: https://www.bl.uk/
  • Promotional photo of Boris Karloff as Frankenstein's monster in the film Bride of Frankenstein (1935). Public domain. Source: Retrieved from http://commons.m.wikimedia.org.