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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-12-28 16:15
Project Frankenstein Comes to an End with this Latest Review
Frankenstein and Philosophy: The Shocking Truth (Popular Culture and Philosophy) - Nicolas Michaud


Originally published at midureads.wordpress.com on December 28, 2017.



The book might have been repetitive but it did leave me with some interesting ideas, such as:

Sewing human parts together doesn’t rewrite their DNA, so any monster children will be built on normal human DNA.

The context here was the theory that if Victor was clever enough to make a human being, he surely could have created a woman who couldn’t conceive. So, his reason for not making a companion for the monster wasn’t that sound. To which I thought, what was to stop the monster from forcing Victor to make another female — one who WOULD conceive once the former had given in? Or, franken-children, the next time?

If the monster is that brilliant, he should be able to construct a woman himself and then sail off with her in his home-made submarine.

This part is from a chapter that insists that Victor fears the genius of the monster, which is the actual reason behind his refusal to build a franken-woman. After all, the monster was clever enough to teach himself to talk — one might add, in quite lyrical prose!

Then there was a chapter on Frankenfood (GMOs) and how certain scientific progress can be likened to what Victor did, such as genetic engineering:

biotechnologists often select organisms’ features aiming at enhancing their natural beauty

as well as, electroporation:

cells’ membranes are destabilized by means of electric shocks (an echo of what breathed life into the Monster?)

In the novel, Mary Shelley insinuates an untoward relationship between Justine and the Baron after the death of Ms. Moritz.

Really? How did I miss that? Did anyone else notice this?

It might be that Victor was changing some parts of his story for Walton when he related his tale.

It does feel surprising how we all just take Victor’s word for what happened. Could he have not been lying? And while we are on that subject, what is the deal with Walton going gaga over him? Isn’t the monster supposed to have a silver tongue? Why is what Victor saying affecting Walton on such an intimate level? What did he do to inspire such loyalty?


On the subject of “rogues”, a part of the philosophical book by Jacques Derrida on how we love alienating others from the general population. Anyone who doesn’t fit is labeled a rogue:

a monster which is foreign, strange and misunderstood are trying to point out that which is other to them represents a threat.

This fits beautifully with the way people have reacted to an influx of Syrian refugees into their countries. Furthermore:

using a twisted logic that says more about him or her than it does about the Other.

This brings me to something that I have been meaning to look into. Transgenders have been looked down upon and denied a voice, rights etc. for centuries. When did society start blaming them for being other? How did being born this way become their fault? I think I might have come across a book about transgender history on Instagram. Worth a revisit, right?

who think they are in the right because they are in the majority have a power and strnegth in numbers and in traditions and habits, giving themselves a sense of authority to judge someone outside of their group.

What do I need to say to that that hasn’t already been said? Maybe this:



it causes a normative, indeed performative, evaluation, a disdainful or threatening insult, an appellation that initiates an inquiry and prepares a prosecution before the law.

We all know what an “inquiry” can do!

a judgment that goes beyond calling someone “wrong”; it shows hatred and ill-intent.

a system of judgment where the monster can never be “good.”

(calling ourselves humans) through language, thus in the very way that is denied to those who are being labeled(otherwise).

creating an enemy for themselves, and in turn become an enemy to someone who already feels threatened.

Brings to mind the many times Islamophobia has resulted in people getting hurt!

In the same way, a foreigner who looks like a native citizen presents a threat that a readily identifiable foreigner does not. 

Easy to single out the other when they have beards — or not. I’d also like to mention the Bangladeshi revolution here and the atrocities committed by both sides! Then there is also the Holocaust that is never far from our imagination.


The quotes that stayed with me:




And some funny parts, including:

regularly enchanted by nature, to the point that Clerval goes into aesthetic rapture at least twice a day, when the sun rises and sets.



And the new terms I came across:



Here are some transhumanistic advances for you to enjoy.



This brought me to an important question:



As I end Project Frankenstein, I come to the conclusion that the monster isn’t just a villain. He can be used as an analogy for a myriad of topics. That can only be true because:



Other Useful Links

Project Frankenstein

Status of Project Frankenstein

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review 2017-12-07 06:50
Science and the City by Laurie Winkless
Science and the City: The Mechanics Behind the Metropolis - Laurie Winkless

TITLE:  Science and the City


AUTHOR:  Laurie Winkless




FORMAT:  Paperback


ISBN-13:  9781472913234




Science and the City is a rather superficial, but interesting look at how cities function. Topics covered include the physics and materials required for building skyscrapers; the generation and transmission of electricity; water purification and transport; sewage systems; roads; bridges; trains and train tracks; cars; and the various means that humans connect to each other (internet, satellites, food distribution, finances, time). A rather useful aspect of the book was the division of each chapter into a "today" section and a "tomorrow" section. The "today" section covering how cities function currently, and the "tomorrow" section covering new research and future technologies. So there are a fair amount of interesting future "goodies" to look up and research further.


The author's enthusiasm and bubbliness make this book an entertaining and informative reading experience provided you aren't expecting too many technical details and don't mind an informal writing style. Thankfully there is no running fashion commentary or excessive interviews!


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review 2017-11-27 06:51
Ancient Alien Ancestors by Will Hart
Ancient Alien Ancestors: Advanced Technologies That Terraformed Our World - Will Hart

TITLE:  Ancient Alien Ancestors:  Advanced Technologies that Terraformed Our World


AUTHOR:  Will Hart




FORMAT:  e-book


ISBN-13:  978 159 1432548




The objective of the book is to "present the scientific basis for the theory of directed panspermia, which posits that life, via microorganism, was shipped to Earth by an extraterrestrial civilization".  The author also aims to prove his "Genesis Race Theory" that life was seeded on Earth by an advanced extraterrestrial civilization and that they intervened in the evolutionary processes to create humans and to generate civilizations.


Will Hart takes a look at the whole idea of panspermia in general, the possibility of life in the universe; the possible geoengineering of the Earth; various oddities involving the construction of the Great Pyramid, the advanced engineering and town planning of the Harappan/ Indus Valley civilization in India/Pakistan; modern UFO cases and government response to these; DNA; ABO blood group genetics, clones, chimeras, hybrids and the current state of transgenic science; the Cobalamin/ Vitamin B12 enigma, and ancient Sanskrit texts on advanced civilizations.


This is an interesting book that provides a great deal of "food for thought" and new information to research.  Will Hart raises many interesting questions and seems to have hit on a hypothesis that provides an answer to these oddities.  However, the author could have made a tighter conclusion based on the evidence in this book and his previous book (The Genesis Race), but seems to just leave the reader hanging at the end.


Other book by the same author:

The Genesis Race: Our Extraterrestrial DNA and the True Origins of the Species

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review 2017-05-20 13:01
Good message, told in forced dialogues
Constance & Nano: Engineering Adventure #1 - Kelly Thompson,Nicoletta Baldari

So, I really kinda love this comic.   It's about Constance, a girl who lives in a town where flooding happens more and more often.   This flooding is a great cause for concern: her friend got hit by a car when the street he used to get to school was flooded, and Constance herself almost gets hit until she's saved by the local superhero, Nano.   When she asks her teacher why the street gets flooded, he sets up a meeting between the girl and his friend - a woman - who's an engineer.   Constance not only learns about what's happened, and what's being done to fix this problem, but she also learns about Nano's secret identity and figures out why her mom's garden is flooding.   She uses her newfound knowledge about engineering to fix the garden problem, because she can, and she knows the town is working on fixing the bridge.   This comic is put out by the Society of Women Engineers (or SWE) and it's a great message: women are engineers, and if we want more women engineers, we should foster that curiosity young.   (I'm also glad that this doesn't skew only to women engineers.   That is obviously the focus, but you see women and men working together when there are panels showing what the engineers are doing - like surveying - to start to tackle this problem.   It's subtle, but the message is there: men and women are working together to fix this.)


Everything, from Nano's identity to the big problem of the flooding of the town to the relatively smaller problem of the garden flooding are dealt with and wrapped up, as much as they can be in this short comic.   (Solutions are presented, but the changes don't happen immediately, because realistically it just won't be fixed with the snap of a finger.   Nano says she trusts Constance to keep her secret, which seems weird since they just met and Nano doesn't have any real basis for believing that a young child would have the necessary willpower to keep this secret.)


If only the dialogue didn't feel so stilted and forced.  I understand: the message was the points and it came on so strongly.   Which again is a great message, encouraging and empowering girls to learn about engineering.  But the message overtook any plot, any natural dialogue, and I kind of cringed at this fact.   Still, the importance of the message really overtook any reservations I had.     I'll take it, stilted dialogue and all.   


The art is bright, highly stylized and just excellent.  Adorable, very cartoonish, this fit the message, and the people this message was intended for, so very appropriate here.   Love, love, love the art.   

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