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How does Stevenson create intrigue and engage the reader in "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde"?

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Introduction

How does Stevenson create intrigue and engage the reader in "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde"? Stevenson engages the reader and creates intrigue In 'Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde' by plunging the reader into a world to help explore the duality of human nature and by creating more questions than it answers. At the time this book was published 1886 Society was very strict, did not question religion and there was a great divide between poverty and wealth. This made the reader's of the time engaged and intrigued. The setting Stevenson utilizes to create intrigue and engage the reader builds upon the theory of the duality of nature which was a prominent scheme of thought in the Victorian epoch. Doctor Jekyll is that prominent Doctor that lives in a distinguished part of London. However, Jekyll Lives in Soho, a den of iniquity. These contrasts helped to develop the duality of human nature. Also, the house that Jekyll lives in "wore a great air of wealth and comfort". ...read more.

Middle

This may not be an irrelevant theory as, in 1886, when the book was published no one in Victorian society would have accepted homosexuality. Many of the men in the book have secrets, for instance Utterson seems to have a desire to dabble in the hands of criminality because he sees so many of his clients getting a thrill out of doing crime. These dark activities create intrigue and engage the reader. Stevenson centres upon the concept of humanity as being dual in nature in "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde", although the theme does not emerge fully until the last chapter, when the complete story of the Jekyll-Hyde relationship is revealed. Jekyll describes man as being "not truly one, but truly two," and he imagines the soul as being a battleground for an "Angel" and a "Fiend" each struggling for mastery. As people in the Victorian Epoch people were highly superstitious this book was highly entertaining and created intrigue and new understanding For the characters in "Dr. ...read more.

Conclusion

So he creates an atmosphere of darkness and evil. In 'Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde' there is a slow release of information from the author which creates intrigue and engages the reader. Stevenson does not reveal that Hyde is in fact part of Jekyll until the final chapter. In the Victorian era, this probably shocked the readers and created a sense of intrigue. In relation to today it was probably the equivalent to a major cliffhanger on a popular television show. The revelation in the story probably made Victorian's want to share the book with their friends. Overall, I think that Stevenson uses different literary techniques to create intrigue and engage the reader well. Stevenson draws in the reader by taking the reader into a world that is not to different from their own, especially in the Victorian era. He also makes a point that Dr. Jekyll is a well liked, prestigious gentleman that you would not suspect anything bad to come from him. However, when he takes the potion and transforms into the incarnation of evil, Mr. Hyde, Jekyll is no longer trustworthy and Stevenson uses this idea to represent that there is a 'duality of nature' and that 'appearances can be deceiving'. ...read more.

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