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“See Me”: How the Uncanny Double Supports Maturing Girlhood in Terry Pratchett’s Tiffany Aching Series

Eileen Donaldson


The Gothic double is an effective motif through which to explore the self’s relation to itself. But where traditional Gothic literature positions the protagonist and the double as antagonists, some contemporary literature for younger readers suggests an alternative, dialogic relationship between the two. This dynamic encourages a greater interaction between the protagonist and the double and reflects the postmodern conceptualisation of identity as constituted through the self’s constantly shifting response to others, and itself-as-other. This article explores the significance of the dialogic relationships that develop between the character Tiffany Aching and the various doubles that challenge her in Terry Pratchett’s Tiffany Aching series (2003–2015). In each of the five novels the double presents Tiffany with an opportunity to confront and resolve her specific pre-adolescent and adolescent anxieties. As Tiffany interacts with her uncanny doubles, she assimilates those parts of herself rendered uncanny by the process of adolescent maturation and her reclamation of her alienated selves broadens the scope of her agency.


Terry Pratchett, Gothic double, doubling, agency, Tiffany Aching, adolescent maturation

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