• 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

    To what extent can 'The strange case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde' be ...

    4 star(s)

    At the beginning Jekyll was confident he could control Hyde, "The moment I choose, I can be rid of Mr. Hyde." He tells Utterson, but in the end of the novel Jekyll admits that his alter-ego Hyde had almost total control over him, and he kept seeking more power over Jekyll.

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

    - and the reader recognises that whatever is said in the story simply has to be accepted as the truth. The author gives words an enormous amount of command and authority and, as such, the power of words in this story exceeds the influence of the reader to interpret the events for themselves.

  2. How does Stevenson create fear for the reader in the opening chapters of the ...

    In the opening few chapters Stevenson reframes from describing Hyde, he uses various characters reactions to portray Hyde's repulsiveness. He was twice described as deformed 'He must deformed somewhere, he gives a strong feeling of deformity, although I couldn't specify the point'.

  1. Robert Mighall describes 'The Strange Case Of Dr Jekyll And Mr Hyde' as 'more ...

    In some cases he certainly seems this way. He says he can 'be rid of Hyde (whenever I choose)'. However I think he is more a tragic hero, influenced by science, and possibly trying to break free from the tight binds of Victorian society.

  2. The author not only wrote this novel to present his views on human personality ...

    However, the transformation is described by Dr Jekyll's butler, Pool: "Changed? Well, yes I think so, said the butler. Have I been twenty years in this man's house, to be deceived about his voice? No sir; master's made away with; he was made away with eight days ago, when we heard him cry out upon the name of God."

  1. The Well - Gothic Horror by Elizabeth Jolley.

    Although the two are completely opposites where one believes in happily ever marriages with a prince in shining armour whereas the other believes marriage is simply for a male's sexual pleasure, together they are able to begin a family they have both been robbed off.

  2. The Strange Case Of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde - Discussion as an example ...

    Stevenson was strictly brought up believing that good people went to heaven and sinners went to burn in hell, and the idea of 2 different sets of people with a divide between them stuck in his mind throughout his life.

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