Diskurs och dissonans : "den Samme" och "den Andre" i Mary Shelleys Frankenstein ; or, the Modern Prometheus
Sammanfattning: This essay – Discourse and Dissonance – deals with Mary Shelley’s gothic novel Frankenstein; or, the Modern Prometheus (1818). The focal point is the construction of “Them and Us”, as defined by scholars such as Stuart Hall, viewed in terms of the following categories: race, gender and family, class, and sexuality. Rather than applying an outside perspective, e.g. a feminist or Marxist one, to the text, I use Cultural Criticism as described by Arthur Asa Berger in order to deconstruct and reconstruct the discourse, as explained by Michel Foucault, within Shelley’s work. In doing so, I view the hermeneutics of suspicion as the starting point due to its recognition of every text’s hidden truth. Stephen Greenblatt’s term dissonance is useful for the study’s aim of finding the differences and similarities in the voices of the novel’s characters. Intersectionality functions as the tool with which I intertwine the above categories in my analysis. In conclusion Frankenstein; or, the Modern Prometheus does not convey a message of conformity. Its class-, race- and gender-bound discourse is reproduced in the text, but simultaneously challenged. The dissonant voices of the novel show the discourse from different perspectives and make it obvious that there are cracks on the surface of the discourse, which Shelley deepens by putting it into writing – whether she was aware of it or not.
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