‘Frankenstein at 200’ Celebration Continues at West Liberty University

West Liberty University’s College of Liberal Arts celebrates the birth of Frankenstein with public events throughout the month of October.

“We are continuing the bicentennial celebration of the novel “Frankenstein” that we began last spring. Our goal is to have a variety of events to offer the community, so this celebration is open to everyone. We want to share the cultural impact of Frankenstein and its inspiration,” said Dr. Angela Rehbein, associate professor of English.

“Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus” tells the story of Victor Frankenstein, a young scientist who creates a monster in an unorthodox scientific experiment. It was published on New Year’s Day 1818.

Throughout Oct. 31, a special exhibit of comic book and graphic novel adaptations of “Frankenstein,” will be displayed in WLU’s Elbin Library with an opening reception planned for 4 p.m.Tuesday, Oct. 2. Dr. Waller Hastings, associate professor of English and curator of the library book exhibit, will give a presentation at the opening reception.

“The book exhibit in Elbin Library especially shows how much cultural impact the original novel has had over the years,” she said. Written by Mary Shelley in 1816 when she was only 18, the novel has never been out of print.

The events, sponsored by a grant from the West Virginia Humanities Council, also include a film festival on Oct. 28-30 with all films beginning at 6 p.m. at the Elbin Auditorium in College Hall. Each night will feature a film adaption of the classic horror film followed by discussion.

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Prior to the screening of each film, Chris Lee, WLU associate professor of communications, will speak about historical and cultural contexts for the film. The film nights and titles include:

  • Oct. 28, the original film adaptation of Frankenstein (1931), starring Boris Karloff.
  • Oct. 29, Mel Brooks’s Young Frankenstein (1974), starring Gene Wilder.
  • Oct. 30, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1994), starring Kenneth Branagh.

Along with the on-campus events, two local libraries will host book discussions about “Frankenstein.” These include:

  • 5 p.m., Oct. 25 at Brooke County Public Library
  • 6 p.m., Nov. 5 at Ohio County Public Library

“This classic novel remains important and continues to hold the attention of readers. I regularly assign it for my students to study in our British literature class,” said Rehbein. “We encourage fans of literature to join us for our exhibit, movies and the library talks.”

For more information, call 866-937-8542, visit westliberty.edu or follow WLU on social media. To reach Elbin Library, call 304-336-8261.