The Double and the Other

  • Paul Coates


The figure of the Double is a recurrent one in folk legend. As a rule its appearance marks the imminence of death. Not until the beginning of the nineteenth century did the Double begin to appear on a large scale in literary texts. (It should incidentally be clear that I am speaking of explicit depictions of the Double, not of the implicit doubling found in the literature of inseparable pairs that begins with Don Quixote.) Its materialisation at this time is less a symptom of death than of transformation — the dying of an old imaginary order. The Double was then to reappear at the end of the nineteenth century. Why this double appearance? I would like to suggest some possible reasons.


Secret Sharer Scarlet Fever Inverted Comma Siamese Twin Ordinary World 
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Copyright information

© Paul Coates 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul Coates
    • 1
  1. 1.McGill UniversityMontrealCanada

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