Thursday, September 19, 2019

Stevensons Use of Literary Techniques in The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyl

Stevenson's Use of Literary Techniques in The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde In his novella "Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde", Robert Louis Stevenson explores the dual nature of Victorian man, and his link with an age of hypocrisy. Whilst writing the story he obviously wanted to show the people of the time what happened behind closed doors. In Jekyll's suicide note he makes the following observation " I have observed that when I wore the semblance of Edward Hyde, none could come near to me at first without a visible misgiving of the flesh. This, as I take it, was because all human beings, as we meet them, are commingled out of good and evil: and Edward Hyde, alone in the ranks of mankind, was pure evil." I believe that the underlying moral of this novella is that we are all comprised of good and evil, and that we should possess the ability to control and acknowledge the darker side of ourselves. Dr Jekyll is described as "a large, well made, smooth-faced man of fifty, with something of a slyish cast perhaps, but every mark of capacity and kindness". However, when angered "The large handsome face of Dr Jekyll grew pale to the very lips, and there came a blackness about his eyes". He is a very strong-minded man, as he argues about his will with Mr Utterson, however he does become addicted to Hyde, and too weak to oppose him. Mr Utterson after meeting Hyde for the first time, starts to feel sorry for his friend, however he does suggest that Jekyll has a dark past "was wild when he was young; a long while ago to be sure". Mr Hyde is presented as a very dark and sinister character. Hyde " was small and very plainly dressed, and the look of him, even at a distance, went somehow against the watcher's incli... ...l's mind to kill them both. By Jekyll killing, himself he sets both him, and Hyde free, although it is Hyde who is found when the cabinet door is forced open. This is because when Jekyll dies, he is emotionally and physically venerable, and Hyde shines through. So theoretically, it is Mr Hyde continues to exist temporarily when Dr Jekyll is gone. Therefore, I conclude that Stevenson explores the duality, which lies within man very well and aptly describes this phenomena in Jekyll's suicide note when he writes, " all human beings, as we meet them, are commingled out of good and evil". However, I feel that he has not truly exploited the capabilities that could have been developed when sculpting Hyde's character. Jekyll's original experiment was to try to create a purely good man, however, he just ends up destroying his experiment and eventually himself.

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