Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Did the Golem inspire Frankenstein's monster?

GOLEM WATCH? The secret Jewish history of Frankenstein (Seth Rogovoy, The Forward).
Author Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley was born on this day, Aug. 30, in 1797 in London. Shelley is best known as the author of the Gothic novel “Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus” and as the wife of the Romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley. Mary Shelley was something of a radical in her time: a believer in free love, a proto-feminist, an atheist and a prolific female author when the prevailing notions of womanhood did not include writing novels and biographies. Among dozens of writings that challenged her father’s political theories and her husband’s notion of Romanticism, Shelley’s legacy includes the age-old question: Was the premise of her “Frankenstein” based on the Jewish folktale of the Golem?


It doesn't sound likely, but it's an intriguing question.

Last year I linked to another article that explored the same question. But it has succumbed to link rot. For many PaleoJudaica posts on the Golem tradition, start at that post and follow the links.

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