Contents Index

great dissimilitude in our characters

The major dissimilitude in this description is between highly conventional notions of essential masculine and feminine attributes. Whether this is Victor's mode of categorizing, Mary Shelley's, or that conventional to her age is a moot issue. For readers concerned with Mary Shelley's feminist commitment or with the way gender destinctions are reflected by early nineteenth-century novels, Elizabeth's lack of self-assertiveness and her easy acquiescence in a traditional female role have generally posed unsettling questions.