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How does Robert Louis Stevenson depict the relationship between Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, and what, in your view does Mr Hyde represent?

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Introduction

How does Robert Louis Stevenson depict the relationship between Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, and what, in your view does Mr Hyde represent? Robert Louis Stevenson wanted to gradually show the relationship between Jekyll and Hyde in his story. It does not state until the end of the story that they are in fact the same person, he instead leaves it for people to work out for themselves, with a brief explanation at the end of the book. For most of the story, nobody can explain their relationship, as they are never seen together. People are confused as to how they know each other and became such good friends. Clues are given throughout the story that they are the same person; not enough to guess on your own, but so that it all makes sense in the end. These clues include the fact that Hyde once goes into Jekyll's home and takes out Jekyll's chequebook to pay out of Jekyll's bank account. People found this very strange, 'a man does not, in real life, walk into a cellar door at four o'clock in the morning and come out of it with another man's cheque'. ...read more.

Middle

At first Jekyll is the stronger of the two, he has control over when Hyde comes and goes. Over time Jekyll takes more and more of the potion that turns him into Hyde, succumbing to temptation, which is already a sign of Hyde (evil) getting stronger and Jekyll (good) getting weaker. There is a lot of symbolism in the story, for instance, Hyde is of small stature because he has not been alive for as long 'Particularly small and particularly wicked looking', 'pale and dwarfish'. Eventually, from being 'used' so much, Hyde got stronger and bigger in size and began to overpower Jekyll, and their positions are switched. One morning, Jekyll woke up as Hyde, without even taking the potion, not recognizing his own hand. 'Lean, corded, knuckly...thickly shaded with a swart growth of hair. It was the hand of Edward Hyde'. Instead of Hyde being Jekyll's favoured side, fun and outgoing, he is an evil who he now cannot escape. Hyde represents the bad in Jekyll, everything Jekyll has been scared to do, Hyde does. ...read more.

Conclusion

He uses Hyde as an excuse to himself for what he is doing, lying to himself about the evil he has helped to commit. 'My devil had long been caged, he came out roaring'. This is a good idea from Robert Louis Stevenson as it gives a clearer impression to the readers about Jekyll and Hyde's relationship with each other and shows their personalities and how they differ. Another interesting way the existence of Hyde can be perceived is that he is the meaning of evil, 'that child of Hell' sent to destroy lives. One character saw himself as the person to hunt down evil, though in the end he was unsuccessful, 'If he be Mr Hyde, I shall be Mr Seek', a clever play on words suggesting evil against good. Black is often linked with evil, Hyde is only used during the night time when it is dark and he has dark hair, as opposed to Jekyll only being himself in the light and having fair hair; another difference between them. His general appearance also looks evil to those who see it; Hyde's visage is described as 'Satan's signature on a face'. Hayley Thompson 11(4) ...read more.

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