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How Does the Author, Robert Louis Stevenson, Present Good and Evil in his Novel 'Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde'?

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Introduction

How Does the Author, Robert Louis Stevenson, Present Good and Evil in his Novel 'Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde'? The novel 'The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde' was written in the late 19th century (1886) by Robert Louis Stevenson who first began to study engineering only with the aim of following his father's footsteps. However, Stevenson who had not really wanted to study engineering, compromised with his father and decided to study law instead. Although he 'passed advocate' he did not practise law as he had already decided to become a writer. Following his dream, he chose to go to France to be in the company of some other artists, writers and painters. He later published volumes of writing which were regarded as some of his best. Immediately after Stevenson's 'inland voyage' in 1876 he met his future wife, Fanny who changed the rest of his life. He was twenty-five years of age and she was a thirty-six years old independent American 'new woman' separated from her husband with two children. Two years later, Fanny decided to obtain a divorce from her husband and Stevenson set for California in order to be with Fanny. ...read more.

Middle

He was religious and he had "copy of pious work for which Jekyll had several times expressed great esteem". He believed that he was still a gentleman as it was Hyde whom Jekyll described as "pure evil". Dr Jekyll was described as "a large man", "a smooth-faced man of fifty" and his hand is described as "professional in shape and size", "large", "firm" and "white". Mr Hyde, the evil side of Dr Jekyll, is described as being "deformed somewhere" but many of the characters "cannot specify the point" of where the deformity is. This is why Hyde is quite so repulsive and as physiognomy was strongly believed in, for Hyde's appearance to be so repulsive he must have been evil. As the people do not know how to describe the evil which is seen in Hyde they describe it as a deformity. He is also described as "hardly human" and "like Satan" showing the extent of his evil appearance. Hyde was "dwarfish", young and his hand was "lean, corded and knuckly". Jekyll and Hyde are opposites showing evil and good in their appearances and personalities. Mr Utterson, a trustworthy and respected lawyer is described as "backward in sentiment". ...read more.

Conclusion

Jekyll resorts to drugs to satisfy his desires. This book is relevant in society today as people resort to alcohol, drugs, crime, and other evil things for pleasure and relief from aspects of their life. They are then ashamed but do not have the will power to stop or know of no other way in which to live their lives. Good and evil are well represented in 'The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde'. Using the good and evil of the same person was an extraordinary idea by Stevenson. He manipulated the ideas of Freud and Darwin to create an exhilarating novel. Dr Jekyll does try to do the right thing at the end. Stopping the intake of the potion which changed him to Mr Hyde was a start in ending the disaster he had caused by unleashing Mr Hyde. In order to relieve his conscience, he donated a lot to charity even though nothing could change the fact that his other form had killed Sir Danvers Carew. Finally, the evil overcame the good which was what made the 'Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde' a gruesome, gothic Victorian horror. ?? ?? ?? ?? Saagar Kotecha 11SZ 1 ...read more.

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