Frankenstein and Blade Runner Context

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Module A
This is a COMPARATIVE STUDY underpinned by the concept of CONTEXTUALISATION. Therefore you need to have:
* A thorough understanding of how the social, historical and cultural contexts of the two texts have impacted on the crafting of the texts
* The content
* Different perspectives of the text
* Your own reception of the texts
* When comparing and contrasting you must question whether they present changing values and different perspectives about the use of technology and what has been created.
Both texts:
* Explore dilemma that continues to be significant in the twenty-first century: the ethical and moral tension between the fear of humanity??™s abuse of technology- because of our inherent flaws such as ambition, ego and greed ??“ and the incredible potential for technology to extend life and even defy death.
* Consider the ramifications of using technology to create life
* Humanity abuses its gift
* Both explore how scientists have not considered the ramifications of using technology to create life.
???Our unstoppable pursuit of knowledge and increasing technological advances have made us cross the line. Humanity is playing God without considering the consequences??™.

*Note: making an explicit connection between the context of both texts and its impact on the meaning being communicated is essential in this comparative study. Both texts deal with issues that arise from the events, attitudes and values of their period.
Frankenstein Context:
Mary Shelley??™s world in the early nineteenth century was in a state of flux, with humanity gaining more individual power and technological advances escalating (with the industrial revolution). This is also apparent in Blade Runner, however, the disturbing context of the 1980s has been projected forward to a dystopian world in 2019 of globalization and advanced technology.
She was swept off her feet by Percy Shelley at the age of seventeen. Without being married she lived in an irregular household of men who were intent upon achieving glory through their genius. Lord Byron was one such individual. “Surrounded by illegitimate births and infant deaths, they subsisted on high ideals to remake the world through liberation and revolution” (Shattuck 84). It was the hollowness and vanity of these high ideals that Mary Godwin was reacting to when she wrote Frankenstein. Read More:? 

* Her life was darkened by death: mother died, and lost her first child shortly after its birth
* Scientific discovery: electricity, Galvanism, Humphrey davy
* French Revolution in 1790s: social order being challenged, effect on notions of class and identity
* Industrial Revolution
* Enlightenment
* Romanticism
* Story of Prometheus
* There is reason to believe that James Lind (mentor to Shelley??™s Husband), who was one of the first to demonstrate electro-medical experiments in London, was a model for Victor Frankenstein (based on the assumption that Mary learned how to galvanise a corpse from her husband reminiscing on his school days). (
* Her husband??™s philosophy that man could be perfected through knowledge.

Blade Runner Context:
Made in 1982, the film Blade Runner reflects the growing awareness in the 1980s that human actions were threatening nature, and that the rights and needs of individuals were being overshadowed by the greedy pursuit of profit. The extinction of many natural species, the threat of acid rain and global warming, and the pollution of once pristine environments were suddenly making headlines. Large companies were vying for economic control, and leaders such as Margaret Thatcher in the UK were championing big business rather than the vulnerable worker. In the USA, President Ronald Reagon was implementing economic rationalism, which led to high levels of unemployment and the removal of welfare support. The Fringe dwellers in Blade runner, who are deformed and soulless and can only scratch out an existence from crime, represent the new, permanently unemployed class of people who emerged in the UK and in the USA. In the world of Blade Runner, globalization has witnessed the decline of government control and the rise of power of the multinationals. The Tyrell Corporation has accrued uquestionable global power and control.
* Environmental Impact of Human actions: acid rain, global warming, extinction.
* Man??™s pursuit of glory and power: Importance of business and money put over the everyday man, big business was prioritized over the environment and the welfare of individuals and families. (note that this seems so inhuman)

Point | How it is shown in Frankenstein |
Scientific developments: Enlightenment/ Industrial revolution | |
Romantic Era | |
Experiences with death: mother, and 1/5 children surviving childhood, and husband. | |
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Blade Runner Context:
Point | How it is shown in Frankenstein |
Scientific developments: Cloning | |
Environmental Damage | |
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