Mary's own mother had died of puerperal sepsis 11 days after giving birth to her fame-bound daughter.
Percy, as a 2013 paper in paper's author, Ronald Britton, a prominent psychoanalyst, links these tensions and griefs to the daydream in which Mary Shelley first envisioned Frankenstein's monster—"the spectre which had haunted my midnight pillow," as she later put it.
"On the whole, in the face of clear commitment, HEAVEN could bear fruit within a couple of years," they write.
(Many scientists have called the project unfeasible and unethical, but last November, two of the co-authors announced to the media that they had performed a head transplant on a human corpse and soon planned to publish details.) But by far the bulk of the scientific literature hand-wrings, ponders, and philosophizes about the most familiar form of the myth, which Shelley flicked at in her "Modern Prometheus" subtitle: the idea that mad scientists playing God the creator will cause the entire human species to suffer eternal punishment for their trespasses and hubris.
A 2004 paper in the that reviews the "electrophysiological undercurrents for Dr.
Frankenstein" notes that Shelley could not have missed the widely discussed work of Giovanni Aldini, Galvani's nephew, who in 1803 zapped the heads of decapitated criminals in an attempt to reanimate them; he imagined this could be used to resuscitate people who had drowned or suffocated and possibly to help the insane.Over time, the influence ran from the novel back to science. A "Frankenrig" used to create 3D animations, made by mixing and matching bones from different skeletons."From Frankenstein to the Pacemaker," in movie starring Boris Karloff, which "sparked Bakken's interest in combining electricity and medicine." Bakken would later found Medtronic, develop the first transistorized cardiac pacemaker, and open a museum devoted to electricity in the life sciences that's housed in a Gothic Revival style mansion in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Indeed, many scientific studies proudly reference , mainly because they combine disparate parts to create a novel entity that the researchers present as delightfully chimeric. An atlas of the head and neck to guide radiotherapy, created by merging views from different patients. In perhaps the strangest embrace of the proposes recreating Aldini's electrifying head experiments., ticks off a diverse list of recent experiments that have drawn the "Franken-" label: the cloning of Dolly the sheep, the engineering of a highly lethal H5N1 bird influenza that could more easily infect mammals, the synthesizing of an entire bacterial genome.Other triggers of -ish fears have included in vitro fertilization, proposals to transplant pig organs into humans, and tomatoes endowed with genes from fish to make them freeze-tolerant. Craig Venter, a pioneer in genomics based in San Diego, California, has been called a Frankenstein for his effort to create artificial bacteria with the smallest possible genomes. "I think she's had more influence with that one book than most authors in history," says Venter, who owns a first edition.But the proposal does exist in a 2014 paper, which speculates about whether the story would have had a happier ending if 21st century safeguards had existed 2 centuries ago.It is one of many riffs on the novel to be found in biomedical literature.And as with all long-lasting myths, it is not one myth, but many, as a search for "Frankenstein" in the Pub Med database—the main catalog of life sciences papers—makes clear.Scientific literature, like the popular press, is rife with references to Frankenfood, Frankencells, Frankenlaws, Frankenswine, and Frankendrugs—most of them supposedly monstrous creations."If I do succeed in fully animating a human or human-like creature, I will provide the creature with information about the study and allow it, if it is capable, to choose whether or not to participate further in continued observation and study," noted the budding scientist.If the creature had "diminished capacity," Frankenstein promised to bring in a third party to act in its interest and treat "the being" in accordance with recognized standards.