The questions that follow are on a central theme and are aimed at intermediate to advanced students. One question per week as students learn new genres.



(with apologies to Mary Shelly)


FRANKENSTEIN’S  MONSTER       In this special project, the famous and much-abused story of Professor Frankenstein and his monster provides the basis for a range of different kinds of writing. As you read through the project, you will notice that we don’t expect you to treat the subject matter particularly seriously but we do expect you – as always – to treat your writing seriously. Your emphasis should be on adapting the language you use to suit the type of writing you are doing and the audience you are writing for.  We recommend that you set your work out appropriately to help you in choosing the right kind of language:  for example, if you set out your newspaper page with headlines, columns, photographs and so on, you are more likely to remember to write like a reporter – and not like the novelist we ask you to be later in the project.


HERE IS YOUR STORY   Professor Frankenstein is experimenting with a process whereby he can create a new, living human being. He has reached the stage where he is almost ready to switch on the electric current that will give life to the newly assembled body.

The professor’s surgical methods are somewhat crude and  the creature on the operating table is incredibly ugly.

Both Professor Frankenstein and his assistant, Dr Clerval, are obsessed by their actions and the morality of giving life to a freakish combination of human spare parts. They can think only of the glory attached to achieving this scientific first and perhaps getting mention in the British Medical Journal of the New Scientist.

Question 1.   Professor Frankenstein has been writing his scientific report step by step throughout the experiment. Write the extract from the report that he prepares that evening, just after his creature has come to life. Include in the report, a detailed description of the creature and its reaction when the life giving electric charge is poured into it. Your report may be illustrated by sketches and diagrams.    (100 words)

Although she has no idea of what has been going on in the locked laboratory, Professor Frankenstein’s maid, Joanna, has become increasingly uneasy about the suspicious behaviour of Frankenstein and Clerval. Joanna is a simple soul, not very bright, but she is sure that “that pair is up to no good”. On the evening in question, she is disconcerted by the strange sound coming from behind the locked door.  She decides to leave her job immediately.

Question 2.   Write the postcard that Joanna sends to her mother, explaining that she will be returning home in a day or two and giving her reasons. (50 words).

 

CHOICE OF:                                                                                                                                    

Question 3A: Imagine that you are an invisible observer in the laboratory at this time. Script the conversation between Frankenstein and Clerval just before the electricity is turned on.  (100-200 words).  With a friend, act out this scene before class.  (Oral)

                                                            OR

This refers to 3B

After several days of living in the laboratory the creature becomes restless, and one night while Frankenstein is away, it wanders out into the London streets. Although it is motivated largely by harmless curiosity, the monster causes quite a stir in the city.  The police received numerous calls from terrified residents who have met the grotesque creature.

One of the first reports comes from well-known society hostess, Lady Thelma Parker.  Sergeant Graham is sent to interview Lady Thelma.  As Lady Thelma spends most of her waking hours attempting to get her name and photograph in the papers, Sergeant Graham is rather slow to believe her story.

 

Question 3B:  Script the interview between LadyThelma and Sergeant Graham                         (100 – 200 words)  (Oral)    

Prominent London businessman Mr Rupert Taylor comes across the monster in a dark street not far from the Royal Hotel, where he has been enjoying his weekly evening out with “the boys”.  Mr Taylor is so shaken by the incident that he decides to change his life-style.

Question 4: Write five entries in Mr Taylor’s diary, where he resolves to stay home at night, give up drink and do good works.  (150 – 200 words).

Question 5: Design the front page of the London Times, including the headlines, news reports and an identikit sketch of the monster.

The monster, too, is frightened – by people’s unaccountable reactions to its endeavours to be friendly.  It goes into hiding.  When the police are unable to find the monster or give any satisfactory explanation about the sighting, the general public becomes disturbed about the situation. An expression of this disturbance is found in a newspaper editorial that poses the question:

What is our police force doing about the maniac who is terrorizing our city?

Question 6: Write the editorial.  (100 – 200 words)

The monster has gone into hiding but is able to obtain copies of the newspapers. It decides to write a letter to Dorothy Dix expressing its desire to be accepted by others.  It explains how difficult it is to form meaningful relationships with people when they keep running away.

Question 7: Write that letter and Dorothy Dix’s reply.  (2 x 50 words)

Question 8: Write an ending to the story. Imagine that this ending is part of a sensational novel written for the mass market:  make it as chilling as you can.  (150 words)

Question 9: Within your groups, be prepared to discuss censorship of horror films or novels.  A study of the pros and cons and a mature attitude will be required during this group discussion.  (oral)

Question 10: Recital of your original Frankenstein Poem written in the first person. (Frank’s actually writing it)  (oral)