Monster metaphors matter. They show what a culture demonizes and they provide a vocabulary for those who are marked as monstrous to resist.
Elizabeth Young is Carl M. and Elsie A. Small Professor of English at Mount Holyoke College. She is the author of Black Frankenstein: The Making of an American Metaphor and 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. She is currently completing a book about animal representation in 19th-century North American fiction, visual culture, and taxidermy.