and symbolizes his split-personality, that is, Fred as Arctor spying on Arctor and, in turn,unknowingly setting up Barris.Arctor/Fred's awareness and assessment of his situation, however, is not nearlyas acute as that by Dr. Jekyll of his. Fred notes that "When you get down to it, I'mArctor…I'm the man on the scanners…I'm slushed, my brain is slushed. This is not real.I'm not believing this, watching what is me, is Fred -- that was Fred down there withouthis scramble suit; that's how Fred appears without the suit!" (p. 132) Earlier in the novelArctor wonders "how many Bob Arctors are there? A weird and XXXXed-up thought.Two that I can think of…The one called Fred, who will be watching the other one, calledBob. The same person. Or is it? Is Fred actually the same as Bob? Does anybodyknow? I would know, if anyone did, because I'm the only person in the world that knowsthat Fred is Bob Arctor. But…who am I? Which one of them is me?" (pp. 74-75) Andthen there is what Barris says about Arctor, "There's a great deal about Bob Arctoryou're not aware of…That none of us are. Your view is simplistic and naïve, and youbelieve about him what he wants you to…I have come…to distinguish in him certaincontradictions. Both in terms of personality structure and behavior. In his totalrelatedness to life. In, so to speak, his innate style." (Pp. 32-33)Simplistic our view would appear to be, indeed, and contradictions there are. Asearly in the novel as page seventeen one finds "In his scramble suit, Fred, who was alsoRobert Arctor, whatever" (p. 18), which phrase is repeated on the next page. Then, Fredthinks "he always had a strange feeling as to who he was…What is identity?…Wheredoes the act end? Nobody knows." (Pp. 20-21) Also on page twenty is the phrase"Arctor-Fred-Whatever-Godknew." The Arctor/Fred character in Dick's
A Scanner Darkly
, therefore, is aware of his two personas, but as Arctor says "
which of them is me?"
(emphasis mine) That is, which persona is the real one? Which is original andwhich is the split personality?Note that there is a progression, of sorts, from "Fred, who was also RobertArctor" to "Fred, Robert Arctor" to "Fred, Robert Arctor, whatever" to "Arctor-Fred-Whatever-Godknew." Further, the Arctor/Fred character
A Scanner Darkly
in reaction to being introduced as "the vague blur" by the host at a AnaheimLions Club: "In his scramble suit, Fred,
who was also
Robert Arctor, groaned andthought: This is terrible." (p. 17, emphasis added) But this is the narrator speaking, notArctor or Fred. Four paragraphs later one finds this exchange:"But to be serious for just a moment," the hostsaid, "this man here…" He paused, trying toremember."Fred," Bob Arctor said. "S.A. Fred." (p. 17)Again, this is narrative identification, as are those in the progression mentioned, all ofwhich intimates that the narrator is an unsure as Arctor/Fred. The implication, though, isthat the original persona is Bob Arctor. But, Arctor doesn't know this. Or does he?"…Fred in his scramble suit naturally reported on himself. If he did not, his superior --and through him the whole law-enforcement apparatus -- would become aware of whoFred was, suit or not. The agency plants would report back, and very soon
he as Bob Arctor
…" (p. 44, emphasis added) One could infer from this that Fred is the originalpersona and is well aware of his undercover role as "Bob Arctor." Yet, this is at best asimplistic conclusion not conclusively supported by facts. True, we are told a lot more