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

How and Why does Robert Louis Stevenson create a contrast between Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde? What does the story have to say to a modern reader?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

English GCSE Coursework How and Why does Robert Louis Stevenson create a contrast between Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde? What does the story have to say to a modern reader? In this essay, I will be discussing Robert Louis Stevenson's novella 'The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde' published in January 1886. This book is well remembered because it raised a number of interesting ideas that have become the foundations of many modern horrors and mysteries. However it may not have been so if it was not for Robert Louis Stevenson's professional writing skills. Through this essay I will be focusing on how Stevenson creates a contrast between Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and also his reasons for doing this. In addition I will be exploring what this book has to say to a modern reader. Firstly, Robert Louis Stevenson creates a contrast between Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde for a number of reasons; these include the build up of a mystery. This is essential to keep the reader interested and well absorbed into the important issues that are faced in the story, such as reputation, the duplicity within human and scientific findings. The significant contrast between Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, one being good-natured man with an exceptional reputation and the other being a threat to civilized society; creates a heavy cloud of suspicion for the reader as to why they are friends or equally why Dr. ...read more.

Middle

Hyde to be dark and sneaky as well as villainous; unlike Dr. Jekyll. Furthermore, a contrast is created through the characters' actions. For instance Dr. Jekyll did many good deeds and was known to be sociable. This is shown by "renewed relations with his friends...he had always been known for his charities" from this I can tell that Dr. Jekyll was a very friendly and likeable man who was also very generous. However Mr. Hyde appears to be someone sadistic and spiteful. This is shown by the account, "with ape-like fury, he was trampling his victim under foot, and hailing down a storm of blows", this shows him to be much inconsiderate towards others as well as inhumane and rather monstrous. This is very different to Dr. Jekyll as we know his character is much more civilized, considering he has a very good reputation. The language that Stevenson used for Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde are very different from each other- this creates an evident contrast between the two characters. Firstly, Dr. Jekyll speaks in a very polite and gentle manner, which can be seen from when he says, "My good Utterson" and then continues to say "this is very good of you, this is downright good of you, and I cannot find words to thank you in." This style of speech is very compassionate and friendly, and it also implies a very gracious tone. ...read more.

Conclusion

By reading the book, one may also perceive city life in Victorian times to be quite troublesome; considering the drugs, deaths and various conflicts. Hence a modern reader can relate to the novella because, in fact in today's world, urban areas are recognised in a similar way. Since 1885, this story has been retold in different settings with slightly different details but overall, the same title is used which proves it as an expression in modern language. As a result, modern readers associate the title with the duplicity within a human and the good and evil qualities exposed by them. On the whole, I believe that Robert Louis Stevenson created a contrast between Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde to build up a mystery; to explore the idea of good and evil within a person; and to suggest how people react to evil in society; as well as to give a moral. Moreover, I believe he achieved these by the appearance of the characters; their actions; and what's more their language. I also believe that the two sides of the house of Dr. Jekyll was another way of creating contrast between the characters. Finally, I believe that a modern reader learns of Victorian society, roles and attitudes and can also relate to issues faced in the story as well as the moral they are represented with. In fact the title of the novella is now used as an expression in modern society. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE 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 GCSE Robert Louis Stevenson essays

  1. How does Robert Louis Stevenson explore the duality of human nature in Dr Jekyll ...

    face, smoothed by hypocrisy", which implies that she was more than happy to implicate her employer suggesting that even during Victorian times people were as we are today 'gossip motivated'. Yet another character in the novella is Mr Utterson, who in his own narrative reveals himself to be : "lean, long, dusty, dreary, and yet somehow lovable".

  2. How does Stevenson create intrigue in Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde

    It explains to Mr Utterson why Dr Lanyon was given a mysterious letter from Dr Jekyll. The letter requested him to break into one of Jekyll's cupboards and take home all the contents of a certain drawer and that someone would come to collect them from Mr Lanyon at midnight.

  1. How does Stevenson present the conflict between good and evil in Dr Jekyll and ...

    He does still consider Jekyll his friend, despite often referring to him as insane and apparently not trusting him. The knowledge of exactly what his friend had become destroyed him completely, and he became too afraid to speak of it or even to sleep.

  2. How does Stevenson explore the theme of duality in Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde?

    stop him and this is evident in that Hyde would never have committed suicide. Jekyll commits suicide because he realises that there is no hope and he cannot keep on fighting because it is a loosing battle that he will not win.

  1. Chapter 1: Story of the Door

    Even stranger, in case of the disappearance of Dr. Jekyll for three months, Edward Hyde should step into Henry Jekyll�s shoes without delay. After considering the implications of the will with what he has learned about Edward Hyde, he sets off for the residence of Dr.

  2. How Does Robert Louis Stevenson use

    emotionally, not physically, and how this fascinates him, he says, 'The drug had no discriminating action; it was neither diabolical nor divine; it but shook the doors of the prisonhouse of my disposition'. The reader learns of how the way people saw and thought of each other was more important than the own persons happiness.

  1. What picture of Hyde does Robert Louis Stevenson create in the readers mind?

    The picture with the Darwin theory of evolution shows a man and a gorilla at a party. Both of them seem to be well dressed but the Victorian in the picture is looking at the gorilla in a shocked way.

  2. "If I Am The Chief Of Sinners, Then I Am The Chief Of Sufferers ...

    Hyde will have a warrant for his arrest, the result of which would most certainly be the death penalty, something that would clearly affect Jekyll also. I believe that Jekyll didn't wish to be burdened by the majority of the problems that came with his dual personality.

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