Doubles in DWJ

Judith Ridge Judith.Ridge at
Mon Dec 13 18:57:04 EST 2004

> <I think Ven's question might have been "what do
> you *mean* by doubles?" because that's my
> question too.>
> only I didn't put it as clearly.

I checked my filing cabinet and I don't appear to have brought home my DWJ
thesis notes, so this is going to be working absolutely from a very shaky 12
year old memory. The books I was writing my thesis on were the Chrestomanci
novels, Time of the Ghost and A Tale of Time City. One thing I was trying to
do was make a connection between DJ's exploration of time in her novels and
the repeated theme/plot of children of a particular age (about 11/12, right
on the cusp of the artificial concept of time firming up in a cognitive
stage) who are, as she said about her son Colin "going to be a genius as
soon as they find out what to be a genius at". I never successfully made
that connection which is another reason I abandoned the thesis, but I still
think there's something in it...

Somewhere mixed up in all of this I was also interested in the "pairing" of
characters within and across books. Janet and Gwendolen are an obvious
example, but there are less immediately obvious ones too; Cat and
Christopher Chant, but what about Cat and Tonino? (I know there were more
across books but I can't remember any now.) And the children in Witch Week
are in effect their own doubles once they end up in the "right" world. I
have a vague memory of there being some twinning of characters across time
and worlds in A Tale of Time City but it's a gazillion years since I read
it, so don't ask me for specifics. Same with Time of the Ghost.

You know, doppelgangers. Don't get me interested in this again, I haven't
the time!

Judith (unintentionally punning)

Judith Ridge
Editorial Staff
The School Magazine
PO Box 1928
Macquarie Centre
NSW 2113
+61 2 9889 0044 (ph)
+61 2 9889 0040 (fax)

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