Posted on Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Paul D. Camp Community College adjunct English instructor Bill Camp is getting some help in his quest to write the next great book on the enduring appeal of Frankenstein on the silver screen.

PDCCC English instructor Bill Camp

Camp, in his third year teaching at PDC, won a scholarship this fall from the Horror Writers Association, and is using the award to build up his library of books and films about the iconic tale of man’s hubris and the misuse of science.

Camp’s Franksploitation will examine how Mary Shelly’s original novel, published two-hundred years ago, came to occupy its commanding position in our modern mythology.

The story has been brought to the screen more than 60 times, starting with a short subject from Edison Studios in 1910. The classic Boris Karloff portrayals began in 1931, and spinoff titles have ranged from serious to the outlandish, including Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man, Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, Frankenweenie, and even Frankenhooker.

“I’m working on a non-fiction book that will consider how the Frankenstein story was interpreted and presented at different times in our history, and across cultural lines,” said Camp. “As such, we’ll analyze which aspects of Shelley’s novel filmmakers chose to emphasize and which they pushed into the background.”

Camp notes the Frankenstein story has enjoyed international appeal, with movies on the subject produced in the U.S., Europe, Mexico and Japan.

Camp hopes to publish his work in the next couple of years.

In the meantime, you can follow his discussion group on Facebook, and in his blog.'

Jim Babb

Jim Babb works for Virginia's Community Colleges in the Office of Strategic Communications.

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