The doppelganger in select nineteenth-century British fiction : Frankenstein, Strange case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, and Dracula

Authors: Romero, Holly-Mary
Advisor: Kent, Brad
Abstract: This thesis investigates the representations of the doppelganger figure in three nineteenth-century British Gothic novels: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Robert Louis Stevenson’s Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Using Charles Darwin’s The Origin of Species and The Descent of Man, and Sigmund Freud’s The Uncanny, I argue that the doppelganger symbolizes social conventions and anxieties of British men in the 1800s. By examining the physical and metaphorical representations of duality and the doppelganger figure in literature, I demonstrate that duplicity was commonplace in nineteenth-century London. I conclude that the doppelgangers are physical Gothic manifestations of terror that epitomize nineteenth-century struggles with propriety, repression of desires, and fears of atavism, descent, and the unknown.
Document Type: Mémoire de maîtrise
Issue Date: 2013
Open Access Date: 19 April 2018
Grantor: Université Laval
Collection:Thèses et mémoires

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