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In lieu of an abstract, here is the article's first paragraph:

Years after writing Frankenstein, Mary Shelley published her Rambles in Germany and Italy in 1840, 1842, and 1843. Early on in it she states her therapeutic intent:

“Travelling will cure all: my busy, brooding thoughts will be scattered abroad; and, to use a figure of speech, my mind will, amidst novel and various scenes, renew the outworn and tattered garments in which it has long been clothed, and array itself in a vesture all gay in fresh and glossy hues, when we are beyond the Alps.” (Part I, Letter I, p.2)

Even if the classic 1948 comedy Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein deviates from Mary Shelley’s novel too much, it is spot-on regarding her larger project of how best to navigate in the pilgrimage of life. By pilgrimage here I mean not a predetermined track, but rather just the opposite, since what is most abhorrent is to let someone else determine your proper path, instead of having a keyed-up watchfulness for the full range of possible futures.


This article was originally published in the October/November 2018 issue of Philosophy Now. The article can also be viewed on the journal's website:

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