The Modern Prometheus: a Reconsideration and Concreteness of a Symbol

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INTRODUCTION Mary Shelley's artistic creativity incorporates in it the peculiar characteristics of English Romanticism defined by historical and social features and spiritual development of the British society. Industrial Revolution generated a quick growth of cities and simultaneously the sharpest social problems. That led to a critical revision of the relation between prospects of social development and scientific and technical progress developed in XVIII century. The crisis of Enlightenment ideology caused a Romantic attitude to life. At the same time English Romanticists to a certain degree still kept fidelity to traditions of the previous stage of development of the literature. Those authors combined former and new tendencies in their works. By this time Mary Shelley's creative heritage has generated a lot of critical works, mythological, biblical and literary parallels. But most of all books and articles are still devoted the novel Frankenstein. From my general understanding of the novel and just by making a quick look at its title-page, I can see that Frankenstein is a text which evidently caries out in its internal structure a synthesis of mythological and literary hints. In composing the book Mary Shelley most probably had two of the central creation myths of the Western tradition in mind. The subtitle 'The Modern Prometheus', points to the myth of the Greek Titan. At the same time the epigraph from Milton's Paradise Lost suggests that the story refers the creation allegory too. Since its debut in 1818, Shelley's novel has elicited many comments from reviewers and critics rising the following often discussed question: 'Did Mary Shelley initially titled her work solely because of the glaring similarities between their stories?' I'm proposing then an analysis which will examine the significance of her giving the subtitle 'The Modern Prometheus' to
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