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Dr Jakyll and Mr Hyde

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As the human nature is to want more when he's not allowed, we tend to want to read more, as the suspense builds up, to find out more about Hyde's case, and because they don't want to talk anymore about it, it suggests that there are a lot of secrets connected to Hyde. To keep us in suspense until the end of the story, Stevenson gradually reveals mysterious information about him. As Val McDruid said in "Guardian", it is a "page-turning excitement", of the dark mystery of the story. The novella is divided into 10 chapters, and we find out the whole story only in the last one, which is narrated by Jekyll himself in his tough decision about Hyde, while during the first 9 chapters more questions are created than answers. One of the first things that catch our attention is the appearance of Mr. Hyde at page 5, first chapter: "...really like Satan". When Mr. Enfield tries to describe Mr. Hyde, he realises his appearance is strange even for words to describe it. When Utterson decides to search him, we find out that Hyde is "small, pale and dwarfish", "deformed [...] tiny". As we go further in the book, and find more about Hyde, we realise that his image worsens. This is a good strategy of maintaining the suspense in the reader's minds. The word "dwarfish", as well as "trampled", had sexual connotation in Victorian audience. ...read more.


As the house is small and inaccessible, this is how Hyde is; he is represented by the place he lives in, dark, small and closed inside. The door connecting to Jekyll's lab, the door through which Hyde had entered in chapter one suggests that there is a connection between Hyde and Jekyll in their minds, personality. Even though their personalities are contrasting, there is a common path which they share in their minds, which might even disappear, if Hyde takes over Jekyll. Also in allegorical terms, when Poole and Utterson break down Jekyll's door, it suggests that they broke inside his mind; they entered and are going to find he's secrets. This adds suspense and mystery to the story, as we know that when someone breaks in someone's private space, it has big consequences and we want to find out what Jekyll is hiding or who is in the laboratory that time. When Utterson and Poole see Jekyll at the window and they see "an expression of such object terror and despair, they have seen a terrified look on the face of Jekyll, which looks like Hyde. Hyde is the terrified side of Jekyll, the scared one which Jekyll tries to protect and hide. In the last chapter, when Jekyll reveals the whole story, which is full of suspense as introduces new concepts about life and opposites. For Victorian people the ideas of having two different personalities made them think about themselves and were fascinated about it. ...read more.


But as we see, Hyde looks different, worse than Jekyll and he is the criminal. Does Jekyll need to be transformed to look evil, to look like a criminal to satisfy the Victorian's idea of specific appearance of criminals to be able to commit a crime? This is another issue that creates suspense and challenges minds in the book. When Jekyll said: "I did not even exist" this is his desperate shout of fear when he realise his evil side is too developed to control it anymore. He feels suppressed. Like in Frankenstein, the doctor is killed by his own creation. This is exactly what happens in this book as well. The doctor, Jekyll, suppressed by his creation, Hyde ends up dead. Except that he suicides, but the allegorical meaning is the same. And who knows, maybe after a while he would have been taken over forever by Hyde, even without his involvement of taking his life. This means that maybe man is not able to create life without catastrophic drawbacks. The secrecy in the novel is powerful, even the noblest of the man (a doctor, Jekyll) has something hidden from the others - his enemy Lanyon. In conclusion, Stevenson's novel has a huge impact on every reader, targeting audiences of different ages. The themes he uses were high appealing for Victorians, as fascinated about crime and creation of life, but as well for a modern audience as we didn't solved the life's mysteries yet. ?? ?? ?? ?? Daiana Mirzarafie-Ahi 10M ...read more.

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