The Sun have outdone themselves. The Sun – clearly short on dodgy sources that link Jeremy Corbyn to the Stasi, giving themselves a breather from the constant slew of caps-lock headlines describing Britain's RAGE at EU BUREAUCRATS – have pulled off an absolute worldie. The Sun have published this:
FLAKENSTEINS Snowflake students claim Frankenstein’s monster was ‘misunderstood’ — and is in fact a VICTIM
If you haven’t read Mary Shelley’s 1818 novel Frankenstein and would like a quick, bitesize low-down of the main themes in the book, I would refer you to the Sun headline quoted just above this paragraph. Frankenstein: a book about a monster who is misunderstood and, as a result of this, "murders his creator's brother, pal and bride", as The Sun puts it.
Yes, The Sun there, reporting on "snowflake students" literally understanding a book.
The report is reacting to Professor Nick Groom's comments in the Times about how attitudes towards the story have shifted over the years. In part, how students today tend to recognise how the story's monster was spurned by society – and how this ostracisation led him to violence. He also raises points about the monster as a sentient being, questioning whether or not the "creature" would be eligible for rights, being composed of both human and animal parts – another element of the story Groom says today's students are fascinated by, describing it as a novel "about medical ethics and the question of sentience". Or, in Sun language: "Bonkers Prof thinks millennials should cop off with monster Frank."
The Sun has since issued a statement about the article, claiming – unbelievably – that it was simply written to reflect how, over time, "more people have begun to see the character not as a terror to be feared but find his actions to be a result of the unimaginable horror from which he has been created".
The statement concludes: "If our story leads people to pick up the book one more time then we’re positively delighted."
But why stop there? This crusade to get the nation thumbing through those dusty, dog-eared editions can go so much further. "Snowflake students think Of Mice and Men PUPPY KILLER Lenny was Mentally Disadvantaged", maybe? Or, "Snowflake students think Kafka’s VILE BUG was Once a Man". How about: "Student snowflakes think Mockingbird’s WEIRD NONCE BOO RADLEY was actually AGORAPHOBIC".
Let’s get Britain reading again. The Sun, thank you.
This article originally appeared on VICE UK.