Frankenstein is the ultimate adolescent novel, ardently asking existential questions about birth, life, death, and responsibility, all set against an apocalyptic backdrop. Late twentieth- and early twenty-first-century Young Adult fiction focuses more closely on the representation of the teenager, as a later cultural icon. In this paper, I want to argue that contemporary children’s literature which specifically draws on Mary Shelley’s novel uses its themes of monstrosity and morality to think about the ethics of alienation. After surveying the pop cultural reach of the Frankenstein story from Chris Riddell’s Goth Girl series to Frankie Stein in Monster High, I want to focus on Kenneth Oppel’s This Dark Endeavour, which reimagines Victor Frankenstein’s own adolescence, presenting him as an evil twin. Oppel’s conceit refashions Shelley’s own fascination with doubleness in her novel in order to consider the divided nature of the teenager, caught between childhood and adulthood.
|Title of host publication||Transmedia Creatures: Frankenstein's Afterlives|
|Editors||F Saggini, E Socchio|
|Publisher||Lewisburg: Bucknell University Press|
|Number of pages||280|
|Publication status||Published - 19 Oct 2018|
- Young Adult fiction
- child-adult relations