Frankenstein-The Doppelganger and It’s Effect
“Especially in the literature of Romanticism, the double figure or doppelganger emerges as a central object of fascination for the imagining self, by turns compulsion and recompense, endowment and disaster.” (Gross, Vo.22 pg. 20)
A majority of the literature population uses the literary device the doppelganger. A doppelganger uses a psychological perspective of a character by taking that character’s hidden wants and desires and making them a completely separate character in the novel. This character then is paired with vaguely similar traits, thus making the two appear as twins but one is the guarded twin and the other being the twin that lives out all the hidden wants and desires. This clever literary device helps further character development while also bringing out the evil behind a seemingly innocent character in a novel. According to Sigmund Freud the manifestation that is made up of a characters hidden desires and wants is called the shadow self. He also believes that between the twins like characters there is always one evil twin. Freud says that the evil twin is most often followed by some kind disease or sickness as a symbol of corruption and plague for hell. In most literature the doppelganger is the evil twin because most hidden desires are against what society finds acceptable or normal. However, in the novel Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, that is not the case. Shelley uses that literary stereotype to present the characters as an evil character and a good character on the surface. But by the end of the Shelley reveals that the characters’ stereotype roles are reversed, making Frankenstein the monster the good character, and Victor the evil scientist. This “role reversal” technique also helps further develop not just one character, but both characters. Victor in the novel appears as an intelligent, courageous, and driven man. However, by the end of the novel he is revealed as a sick, obsessed, and...
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