Pub. Date:
New York University Press
Black Frankenstein: The Making of an American Metaphor

Black Frankenstein: The Making of an American Metaphor

by Elizabeth Young, Colin Leys


Current price is , Original price is $89.0. You

Temporarily Out of Stock Online

Please check back later for updated availability.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780814797150
Publisher: New York University Press
Publication date: 08/10/2008
Series: America and the Long 19th Century Series
Pages: 336
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Elizabeth Young is Professor of English and Gender Studies at Mount Holyoke College. She is the author of Disarming the Nation: Women's Writing and the American Civil War and co-author of On Alexander Gardner's "Photographic Sketch Book" of the Civil War.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
1 United States of Frankenstein
2 Black Monsters, Dead Metaphors
3 The Signifying Monster
4 Souls on Ice
About the Author

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher


“Young's study itself reanimates the critical relationship between artistic form and political function, indicating—regardless of the genre or even the political debate—the distinctly intertwined existences of social history, cultural critique, basic aesthetics, and generic form.”
-The Journal of American History


"A subtle, complex, and deeply read romp through the last two centuries of transatlantic literary and cultural history. Truly eye-opening and provocative."
-—Eric Lott,University of Virginia

In Black Frankenstein, Young tears apart and rearranges the monster we think we know into something entirely fresh and challenging. This excellent and provocative book offers a compelling lesson in the political and cultural uses of a metaphor organized by design, as well as unconsciously, into a racial paradigm."
-—Eric J. Sundquist,author of Strangers in the Land: Blacks, Jews, Post-Holocaust America

"Young's 'black Frankenstein' monster becomes a powerful metaphor for negotiating the racial anxieties of modern America. As the author recounts, the figure appears in both racist and antiracist discourses, exhibiting the powerful mobility of the monster metaphor as well as its popular appeal. Young combines sharp analysis with her amazing research, noteworthy for its breadth and scope, to demonstrate the depths to which this image has penetrated American racial cultures. Whether she is examining novelist Paul Laurence Dunbar, filmmaker Mel Brooks, or comedian Dick Gregory, Young offers astute readings of the cultural text and its racial underpinnings. Building on recent work by Paul Gilroy, Teresa Goddu, Toni Morrison, Michael Hardt, and Antonio Negri, this book provides a compelling new vision of the monster we thought we knew so well. Highly recommended."

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews