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'Frankenstein' exhibit explores book's effects

Sept. 4, 2003

By Lauren Welch, reporter

'Frankenstein: Penetrating the Secrets of Nature' will be displayed Sept. 17 through Nov. 3 in Moody Memorial Library's Allbritton Foyer.

The exhibit will be divided into six different sections exploring several different themes - the author, Mary Shelley; science in the 1800s when Frankenstein was published; and how Frankenstein has been used in films and affected popular culture.

According to the American Library Association Web site, the purpose of the Frankenstein exhibit is to encourage audiences to 'examine the intent of Mary Shelley's novel, Frankenstein, and to discuss Shelley's and their own views about personal and societal responsibility.'

Dr. Betty Bennett, a professor from American University, will give a lecture on Sept. 18 in Mary Gibbs Jones Concert Hall of the Glennis McCrary Music Building.

'Dr. Bennett will be discussing the implications of the novel and the fundamental issues that still concern society,' Janet Sheets, Baylor library science associate professor, said. 'Bioethical issues such as the cloning controversy continue to affect American society.'

Other library events include Trick or Treat Night on Oct. 28 at Moody Library, a drive-in movie featuring Frankenstein films on Oct. 30 at the Ferrell Special Events Center and a Frankenstein Blood Drive. In addition, the Baylor Theatre will be performing Little Shop of Horrors Oct. 30 through Nov. 2 and Nov. 4-9.

'I think this new exhibit will be interesting,' Mindy Byrd, a Waco junior, said. 'The concept of science versus man is always relevant because man is always pushing the limits.'

The Frankenstein exhibit, which first was developed by the National Library of Medicine, will travel to 80 libraries across the country between October 2002 and December 2005.

Baylor will host the exhibit because a large portion of library faculty are members of the American Library Association, Sheets said.

Waco is the last scheduled stop in Texas for the exhibit. The exhibit already has visited the Houston Public Library, Trinity University, Texas Medical Center Library in the Houston Academy of Medicine, Texas A&M University's Sterling C. Evans Library and the W.O. Haggard Jr. Library in Plano.