(855) 4-ESSAYS

Type a new keyword(s) and press Enter to search

The Double Helix

            As you read the cover of The Double Helix, you are bound to find that the book is "a personal account of the discovery of the structure of DNA," but the story is far more than that. More than can be found in any scientific journal or history book. The Double Helix is the story of James D. Watson's trials and tribulations in the effort to discover himself as well as DNA. This is done throught the examination of the characters that sorrounded his work. Those he came in contact with those he loved, and those he loved to hate. "Honest Jim" became who he is because of the outside influence of many others in his scientific and personal worlds. One of the most inturiging characters throughout the book is that of Maurice Wilkin's assistant and antagonist, Rosylind Franklin. As I read, I found that much of Watson is revealed in the way that he relates to Rosy's character. He is a man of great passion and prejudice and many aspects of the man can be examined via his outlook and relationship with Rosy. She is like his own personal cinic the critic he aims to please. Her disapproval fuels his scientific "fire", and in her approval he finds his final satisfaction.
             As he later recounts, "this account represents the way I saw things then, in 1951-1953: the ideas, the people, and myself. (P.3)" Watson is writing about what he saw in others not as much about himself, but what he says about those others reflects himself. I think that the reason he writes about Rosy so much is that he sees her as his opposite, and as much as he didn't like her, he was attracted to her for that reason. .
             Throughout the story of The Double Helix, Rosy is Watson's antagonist. They are so different in some ways yet in many ways the same. At the beginning, Watson introduces her as a problematic, stubborn, and highly emotional woman with a problematic work ethic. "Also, there was no denying she had a good brain. If she could only keep her emotions under control, there would be a good chance that she could really help him (Maurice Wilkins).

Essays Related to The Double Helix

Got a writing question? Ask our professional writer!
Submit My Question