D ISCUSSION Q UESTIONS
1. Do a detailed character analysis of Frankenstein and the creature. Explain in what ways
they are similar and in what ways they are different.
2. Explain the purposes of each of the following characters in the story. Why does Shelley
need them? What do they do? Why?
a. Robert Walton
b. Henry Clerval
3. How is Frankenstein similar to the story of Adam and Eve? How is it different?
4. Imagine you are a judge. The conflict you must resolve is who is responsible for the deaths
of William, Justine, Henry, and Elizabeth. Whom do you find to be guilty of the crimes,
Frankenstein or the creature? Why?
5. Describe the differences between the childhoods of Victor and the creature. How did each
childhood affect the adult?
6. Why do you think Shelley set up the novel as a flashback and a flashback-within-a-
flashback? What effect does this technique have on the story?
7. How is Frankenstein a tragic hero?
8. Agree or disagree with the following statement: “We are what society makes ups.”
9. How are Frankenstein’s and Walton’s stories parallel?
10. The pursuit of knowledge is at the heart of Frankenstein as Victor attempts to surge beyond
accepted human limits and accesses the secret of life. To help further this theme Shelley
uses the symbols of light and fire to represent knowledge. Explain how these symbols are
used to develop the theme.
11. Monstrosity is a theme that pervades the entire novel. The actual monster lies at the center
of the action, however he is only the most literal of a number of monstrous entities in the
novel. Identify and explain another monstrosity in this novel.
12. Another important theme in this novel is the desire of acceptance. Explain how this theme
is developed in this novel. Is it necessary for all creatures to be accepted? Explain.
13. Three of the characters in this novel seek knowledge. What is each seeking, do they obtain
the knowledge they seek, and are they satisfied?
14. Romanticism is a reaction against Enlightenment, how is this novel a remnant of the