Talk:The Wasp Factory

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the underlying theme throughout the wasp factory is that of the connection between Frank and his father. The idea of secrecy and mistrust is one that Banks approaches the audience with.

This is far too much like a book review and not enough like an encyclopedia article. Criticisms of the Thatcher regime belong elsewhere. 07:48, 19 December 2005 (UTC)

I'm going to have a go at rewriting it. Guinnog 00:18, 29 January 2006 (UTC)

  • Also, what is the dispute here? Guinnog 00:21, 29 January 2006 (UTC)

I've taken out the POV stuff about it being a political novel. It just isn't. Guinnog 16:43, 29 January 2006 (UTC)

This needs more work on the plot and what exactly happens. Skinnyweed 17:39, 6 April 2006 (UTC)

I don't agree. I think there is enough here already summarising the story. Feel free to make any additions you think are warranted though. Guinnog 18:45, 6 April 2006 (UTC)
Well the ending is missed out, which is one of the main plot points and essential to the whole book. What justification is there for not including the revelation of frank as a girl and of the build up to that? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:06, 19 March 2008 (UTC)
Well, this book looked interesting to me and I was considering reading it, until I read the ending spoiler listed in the Overview section. That's a good justification for not including the revelation. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:24, 23 July 2010 (UTC)

Regarding adding a link to a blog post - this is an electronic version of an article I wrote several years ago about the influence of The Tin Drum on The Wasp Factory. I think the article is relevant and interesting. [1] I didn't realise I was breaking protocols, sorry! --Severian582 (talk) 15:01, 23 May 2008 (UTC)


I would argue that control is perhaps the more dominant theme throughout the book. Also, the entire literary criticism section would appear to be original criticism, which doesn't seem to mesh with the "pedia" part of wikipedia. No its not, its just copied, but uncited, from here:

I feel there is more to say here about the initial reaction to the novel (with citation) which seemed to polarise critics. Some copies of the Wasp Factory even carried quotation from extremely negative reviews which criticised it as being vile and disgusting. Iain Banks himself requested they be put on the cover because he believed they would help increase sales (listen to the Guardian Book Club podcast that I added to the External Links). MrSplendid (talk) 19:51, 30 August 2009 (UTC)

What does this mean ?[edit]

"The father said it was simply "an experiment" and there are hints it was in order to distance himself from the women he felt had ruined his life." Is this Frank's father? What "was" what ?

Should this read - "Frank's father said that the device was simply "an experiment" and there are hints it was constructed by Frank in order to distance himself from the women he felt had ruined his life."

Andrew Smith —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:46, 13 February 2010 (UTC)


"In a post-Tarantino world, critics find it hard now to see what the fuss was about." What do the films of Quentin Tarantino have to do with a this novel? A better context would be, I don't know, Bret Easton Ellis's 1991 novel "American Psycho," or Irvine Welsh's works, or what's-his-head, the "Fight Club" guy, Chuck P. Willerror 21:49, 20 April 2006 (UTC)

One of the sources I used when I researched my rewrite of the article made the comparison, and I thought it a good one. I think it means that graphical violence with a satirical or highly stylised style has become far more acceptable than it was in the 1980s. Of course YMMV. Guinnog 21:55, 20 April 2006 (UTC)

I think you should have approached it more as a Gothic text, exploring gothic themes such as transgression and excess. Also, the concerns in the novel of masculinity and its destructive nature characterised by the themes of 'the noble soildier' or the patriarchal father. 14:53, 10 May 2006 (UTC)THWAR195.93.21.1 14:53, 10 May 2006 (UTC)

Fine. You can be bold and just edit the article, if you can show evidence that the novel has been reviewed in this way by a reputable source. Guinnog 15:32, 10 May 2006 (UTC)

External Links[edit]

I felt like some of the links need to be cleared out. I put in some new ones from pieces that the Guardian Book Club did on the Wasp Factory that seem very relevant. I feel like some of the other reviews need to be replaced with reviews from more established sources. MrSplendid (talk) 19:51, 30 August 2009 (UTC)


I just read the novel and am wondering about the term "catapult", which is indeed used in both the book and the Wikipedia article for one of Frank's instruments of cruelty. But at one point near the end, Frank describes holding one prong of the device, setting up his target through the other two prongs, and pulling the rubber band back. This sure sounds like a slingshot to me, and perhaps "catapult" is a Scottish nickname for a slingshot. This may matter for the Wikipedia article, because the term "catapult" links to the giant device used to hurl boulders at walled cities. ---DOOMSDAYER520 (Talk|Contribs) 14:39, 16 July 2019 (UTC)

The WP Catapult article also says (rather bizarrely, in the "Military" subsection): "In the 1840s the invention of vulcanized rubber allowed the making of small hand-held catapults, either improvised from Y-shaped sticks or manufactured for sale; both were popular with children and teenagers. These devices were also known as slingshots in the USA." JezGrove (talk) 15:31, 16 July 2019 (UTC)
So perhaps in Scotland they still use the term "catapult" for what Americans call a "slingshot". It seems that the blue "catapult" link in this article should be redirected to slingshot but it's not a deal-breaker. ---DOOMSDAYER520 (Talk|Contribs) 16:13, 16 July 2019 (UTC)
Not just in Scotland - in the rest of the UK as well. But yes, the link should be redirected as you suggest. Best wishes, JezGrove (talk) 16:43, 16 July 2019 (UTC)