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Dr Peter Marks Department of English, University of Sydney

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Dr Peter Marks Department of English, University of Sydney. ‘Texts in Time’ ‘In this elective students compare how the treatment of similar content in a pair of texts composed in different times and contexts may reflect changing values and perspectives.’ Frankenstein 1818 (first edition)
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Dr Peter MarksDepartment of English, University of Sydney‘Texts in Time’‘In this elective students compare how the treatment of similar content in a pair of texts composed in different times and contexts may reflect changing values and perspectives.’Frankenstein1818 (first edition)1823 (second edition)1831 (third edition: revised)‘The most striking thematic differences between the two published versions concern the role of fate, the degree of Frankenstein’s responsibility for his actions, the representations of nature,the role of Clerval, and the representation of the family.’ (p.160) Anne Kellor, in Norton Critical Edition of Frankenstein (1996)Bladerunner Original American theatre release (1982) ‘International Cut’ (1983) Television version (1986) ‘Director’s Cut’ (1993) ‘The Final Cut’ (2007)FrankensteinMary Shelley’s manuscript, as well as the version with Percy Bysshe Shelley’s 5,000 emendations, published by Oxford University Press (October 2008) as The Original FrankensteinBladerunner1968 Philip K. Dick novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?Original treatment and screenplays by Hampton Fancher Dangerous Days Mechanismo Bladerunner (from William Burroughs’ novel)Fancher replaced by David Peoplescompletes script in accordance with Ridley Scott’s ‘vision’ Both texts consider creation/ origins beginnings/endings boundaries of human/non-human (biological/technological)Link between complex creation of texts themselves and content of textsCreations confront their creators Q: why all creators men? Q: why female characters subordinate?Creations recognise themselves as failed, botched creations Not allowed rights of the fully humanQuestion their makersWhen answers inadequate, threaten to destroy their creatorsRelationships between creators and createdPrometheusFall of Adam and EveFall of SatanFrankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus‘Did I request thee, Maker, from my clayTo mould me man? Did I solicit theeFrom darkness to promote me?’ Adam, in Milton’s Paradise LostScientist as PromotheusKnowledge is power (Francis Bacon) Frankenstein prototype ‘mad scientist’Frankenstein’s scientific triumph to animate the monsterFrankenstein first ‘science fiction’ text? Fails to see philosophical/ moral dimensions of creationQ: What does it mean to be human? Monster more than animated flesh To be human (even a monstrous human) have consciousness (self-awareness) have desires (including companionship) be capable of development, change experience reflection education‘Misery made me a fiend. Make me happy, and I shall be virtuous again.’‘I ought to be thy Adam, but I am rather the fallen angel.’Satan: ‘I will not serve.’Replicants as slave labour Off-world Manufactured products of Tyrell Corporation Economic motivation in 4-year life span? endless up-grading= endless income Tyrell: inventor and entrepreneurFrankenstein’s monster ‘useless’ (only proves a scientific theory)Roy Batty as rebel angel Orc ‘Fiery the Angels rose,And as they rose deep thunder roll’dAround their shores:Indignant burning with the fires of Orc.’ From William Blake, ‘America: A Prophecy’Roy Batty: Fiery the Angels fell. Deep thunder rolled around their shores, burning with the fires of Orc.’Humans damaged/ deficient Roy Batty intellectually, physically, morally, aesthetically, ‘spiritually’ most ‘evolved’ character’?Tyrell Corporation slogan: ‘More human than human’Does replicants’ 4-year life span signals fear of post-human world? Fear of the future? Fear of the ‘other’?FearDestructive as well as creative power of knowledgeOutsider, alienEnvironmental degradationTechnology: takeover by/ integration with(in)End, boundaries and/or Limitations of humanity Qs: Is the monster human? Is Deckard a replicant?Q: What does it mean to be human?
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