• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Discuss the insight which 'Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde' gives the reader into Victorian society.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

English course work: Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Discuss the insight which 'Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde' gives the reader into Victorian society. Quote 'The strange case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde' gives an insight into Victorian society because they address some key characteristics which can be attributed to Victorian society, for example the supernatural, the fog, Victorian buildings and finally the advances in science which the Victorian society feared. This paper will now address these issues in more detail. 'Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde' was written in 1886 by Robert Luis Stevenson when he was thirty-six years old. The structure of this novel is unique in that it is not cast entirely as a first-person narration, it could have been possible to tell the story in the manner of a confession from Jekyll's point of view. Robert Louis Stevenson uses multiple narrators to give the effect of different points of view. The story shows three different genres, detective story, horror story and gothic novella. ...read more.

Middle

Gothic novels also centre around secrets such as Jekyll's connection to Hyde, or doppelgangers, a German term referring to people who resemble other characters in strange ways. The monster which Frankenstein made is a doppelganger for the scientist, as Hyde is for Jekyll. Nearly every gothic novel relies on its geography for most of its appeal, they take place in strange eerie locations where the characters find it hard to escape ie Dracula's castle or for 'Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde' the fog blanketed world of night time London. We read that Mr Utterson has dreams in which he views London as a nightmare landscape through which Hyde stalks committing violence against the innocent. The image of the city as a place with hidden terrors recurs to Mr Utterson but this time he is in the company of the police and is driving to Hyde's room early in the morning. A fog has masked the city seem 'like a district of some city in a nightmare' Stevenson shows great descriptive skill on this passage, here he describes the "great chocolate-coloured pall lowered ...read more.

Conclusion

The audience feared that the drug would take over the human mind as human civilization as a whole. This is another effect which made the book a gripping read. Because the fear of people being to clever and producing drugs which take over the mind this made the book appeal to the Victorian audience resulting in many more sales off the book. With the idea of a single body containing both the knowledgeable Dr. Jekyll and the depraved Mr. Hyde, Stevenson's novel imagines a link between civilization and savagery, good and evil. Jekyll's attraction to the freedom from restraint that Hyde enjoys mirrors Victorian England's secret attraction to the savage non-western cultures. In conclusion the novel shows great insight into the Victorians upper class society we see this in Dr Jekyll's house; as well as upper class society we see a side of the lower class this is shown through Mr Hyde. Also we read about the supernatural horror which taunts the reader, another factor is the fog, this gives the impression of a mask for Mr Hyde's rampages. 1Peter Weeks 10K English course work ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Robert Louis Stevenson section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Robert Louis Stevenson essays

  1. Peer reviewed

    Why would a Victorian reader find "The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr ...

    4 star(s)

    person would find this fascinating because of the fact that a potion might be able to do what only God has been able to do before. London is portrayed as a city covered by a "great chocolate covered pall," for at this time smog was common over London.

  2. Explore Stevenson's Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and the Body Snatchers as both gothic ...

    This was somewhat different to the activities that took place behind closed doors, where they could be who they really where and fulfil all their whims of drinking, gambling and whatever else they desired regardless of how it would be viewed in society.

  1. Discuss the aspects of Robert Louis Stevenson's novel that make it a horror story ...

    The door is also very symbolic because no one knew what was inside, as no one is allowed except Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. This is also linked with gothic horror because at the time people were scared of the unknown.

  2. Discuss how Stevenson uses descriptive passages to evoke a mood of horror in The ...

    During that period of time people believed that you could determine a criminal by his physical appearance, hence Hyde's ugliness. When Hyde is trampling over the girls body in "Story of the Door" the novel reads: "It wasn't like a man; it was like some damned Juggernaut.

  1. Consider atmosphere and setting in the 19th century stories you have read, and discuss ...

    Telling us that the story is set in a remote and isolated setting with no one else around, they are alone in the dark of the night with the wind howling, Jacobs had set the story well and with detail to the weather and setting of the story, this immediately

  2. "The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde." - review

    "Your master seems to repose a great deal of trust in that young man... ". Victorian society viewed homosexuality as absolutely forbidden, a famous poet and playwright named Oscar Wilde had a homosexual affair just after marrying, and was therefore imprisoned.

  1. To what extent can Jean Rhys's Wide Sargasso Sea and Jamaica Kincaid's Ovando be ...

    These countries had their own pasts and their own traditions that the narrow-minded colonisers, who had their eyes 'half-shut' (6), failed to recognise or appreciate. Although of course this narrative is written from the biased perspective of the natives (Kincaid's background supports this fact)

  2. Examine how a sense of mystery, terror and suspense is created and maintained in ...

    These dark and brooding characters are 'stock' figures of the Gothic tradition. The grieving spectre of Miss Maude is less developed than that of Miss Furnival and Mrs Stark, but the exposition reveals that she is banished on the fells, "crazy and smiling", driven to insanity as she watches her own baby die before her.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work