Walter Streeter's Doppelganger: W. S.

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Discuss the purpose of a doppelganger: “W.S” By L.P. Hartley
“W.S” is a story about a novelist who started receiving mysterious postcards by someone who always signed off as W.S. The postcards showed that W.S. had insight and understood facts about Walter Streeter’s life and his work as an author. Reflecting on “W.S.” it becomes clear that W.S is Walter Streeter’s doppelganger. The purpose of a doppelganger in this text is to highlight what it was Walter didn’t like and to elevate himself by creating someone without any good characteristics. So although this text resembles William Strainsforth as a villain, Strainsforth is in fact trying to show Walter Streeter how similar they are.

First of all, W.S. (the doppelganger) is being used to
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“He was aware that in most cases they were either projections of his own personality or, in different forms, the antitheses of it” comes to show that W.S. and Walter Streeter were similar and different at the same time. Walter Streeter created W.S. to be the opposite of who he was but may have been unknowingly describing himself at the same …show more content…
The statement “but the words came haltingly, as though contending with an extra-strong barrier of self-criticism” comes to show the Walter Streeter and W.S. (William Strainsforth) are the same person. The quote refers to a point at which Walter Streeter was trying to write but he couldn’t because his thoughts were not flowing well enough as a result of him batting with words from the second postcard from W.S. When Walter refers to “self-critism” it does show that he considers what William Strainsforth is saying as the truth. This statement also shows that he had always had worries about his work which W.S. seemed to be highlighting to him. So in this case the purpose of the doppelganger is solely to highlight an intellectual and an emotional connection between William Strainsforth and Walter Streeter.

The way W.S. as the doppelganger was conducting himself almost made Walter Streeter consider the possibility that he was the one writing to himself. The statement “Suppose I have been writing postcards to myself” comes to show how similar the style of writing was to his own. So in this case the purpose of the doppelganger is to establish a connection between the writing in the postcard to Walter Streeters writing in his novels. This is furthermore cemented by the fact that W.S. had the same initials as William

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