Summary Of The Article 'Cooped Up' With Sad Trash

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“‘Cooped Up’ with ‘Sad Trash’” Analysis Dr. Johanna M. Smith, the author of the scholarly article “‘Cooped Up’ with ‘Sad Trash’”, is an associate professor of English at the University of Texas at Arlington. In her article “‘Cooped Up’ with ‘Sad trash’” her approach to the novel Frankenstein by Mary Shelley is one that takes a feminist viewpoint. In her article, Smith divides her argument into two sections, one that focuses more on the notion of an unpayable debt of gratitude, and the other that focuses on Victor Frankenstein’s transition from alchemical science to chemistry and how that relates to the “tensions and conflicts of contemporary gendered science” (324). Both articles, although presented as two separate entities, flow together magnificently and…show more content…
Smith is a feministic one. The novel Frankenstein by Mary Shelley consist of female characters that tend to be more focused in domestic life, and there is a stressed concept of the need for some sort of maternal figure. In the criticism “‘Cooped Up’ with ‘Sad Trash’”, the notion of an unpayable debt of gratitude, especially within the Frankenstein household. The women, more-so Elizabeth than Justine, takeover the maternal role that had once belonged to Victor’s mother until she passes away. This later serves as a conflict for Victor because it’s almost as if he can’t differentiate between the Elizabeth that is the maternal figure and the Elizabeth that he is supposed to marry. There is also the concept of the balance of masculinity and feminity throughout the novel. Victor, although he is a male character, displays a need to create something and care for it, even if it is to fill some sort of abstract ‘debt’ he feels towards his parents and Elizabeth, and he inevitably ends up abandoning his creation. Victor’s desire to create a living being, despite the way he treated after its birth, is a trait that one typically associates with
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