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

Jekyll and Hyde

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Language & Literature Coursework: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Q. How does Jekyll and Hyde question the nature of respectability, morality and hypocrisy? Robert Lewis Balfour Stevenson was born in Edinburgh on Friday 13th December 1850. His father and mother were Thomas Stevenson and Margaret Balfour but he was largely raised by his nanny, Alison Cunningham (Cummy). Due to her stern Protestantism he was raised on the belief that the evil actions he committed would lead to Hell, Fire and damnation. This affected him as a child as he had nightmares and images of Hell. He had these for a large portion of his life which could explain the dark imagery of Jekyll and Hyde, in contrast with his other published books, such as Treasure Island. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde could be in a way identical to Stevenson's life as it is in a city that is split morally in two, as there is one respectable side and one not so respectable due to society's view. Stevenson lived in a city more or less the same as the one he describes in Jekyll and Hyde. Prostitution is a national scandal yet many respectable men in the eyes of the public visit brothels, this was one of the quarrels Stevenson had with his father saying that prostitutes are more truthful to themselves more than their clients who lie to themselves, and are thus hypocritical. ...read more.

Middle

As Lanyon believed in God, he was offended with the use of science by Jekyll creating life, directly questioning God as Creator. After the witness of the transformation, Lanyon fell ill due to it and died, this shows the scale of congruity between science and religion. Utterson (as I said before) is described as a respectable man in Victorian society. However Utterson has two sides, one public and one private, it could be said that Utterson is being hypocritical to himself because in his youth he experienced pleasures not necessarily 'wild' enough to blackmail and weren't respectable in Victorian society but he understood the temptations of pleasures to a man which is why he is hard to himself avoiding them in the first place. As a respectable man Utterson's reaction to Hyde was described as Satan's signature, Utterson describes him as evil due to Hyde's behaviour and lack of moral awareness expecting Hyde to know the difference between right and wrong, but ironically he doesn't. Dr. Jekyll believed 'that man is not truly one, but truly two'. He feels that man has a duality of life having two personalities, one with moral behaviour and the other nothing more than an animal. The moral personality can only reach the other if the person commits sinful action degenerating him. ...read more.

Conclusion

Hyde is described almost ape-like or troglodyte (cave animal dweller), this is related to Darwinism through the behaviour of man. Dr. Jekyll who did the transformation scientifically, at first had feelings of excitement but was soon replaced by the knowledge that man hasn't got enough will power to control his desires. I think Dr. Jekyll was a hypocrite due to being immoral to himself even through Hyde. He partly deserved to die due to extreme experimenting of man morally in two acting as God. Overall I think the message Stevenson was trying to show was that Victorian obsession with respectability repressed the desire for a type of 'freedom' this was against the natural nature of man. However this view is in contrast with another - that man, without some sort of moral framework to constrain behaviour would degenerate to likeness f an animal. These views are both contrasting throughout the book. The former is depicted in Jekyll transforming to Hyde escaping from society whilst the latter is shown through Hyde's appearance and behaviour. This could mean that trying to resist the first view in any other way than admittingly committing in vice then seen as immoral in society, would result in the second view. Subject: English Ibrahim Hassan-Adde (11T2) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Mr. Perrot Jekyll and Hyde Page 1 ...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. Chapter 1: Story of the Door

    The first long narrative paragraph of this chapter is a significant literary achievement, something that reinforces the theme of duality that runs throughout the book. In the foreground is the maids description of a horrific murder but in the background, or underlying the murder, is the beautiful description of the

  2. Jekyll and Hyde chapter by chapter summary.

    some time, a continually metamorphosing creature who is alternately Jekyll and than Hyde. In this chapter, the full name of Mr. Utterson is also revealed: John Gabriel Utterson, which has additional significance. Gabriel is one of the four archangels, usually given the role of a divine messenger.

  1. Dr. Henry Jekyll (and Mr.Hyde) was born in to a society of morality, respectability ...

    Hyde. Even the sight of Mr. Hyde "... pale and dwarfish... who gave the impression of deformity but with no nameable malformation", according to Mr. Utterson, who "...had taken a loathing to my gentleman at first sight", should have forced Jekyll to recognise that Hyde was evil. It is very difficult to feel sympathy for Jekyll after we are told about when Hyde "...trampled calmly over..."

  2. Prose Study Coursework

    To demonstrate the use of assonance, the sentence 'what if I returned to the boats and the fiends, still shadowed by their crimes' is nowhere near as effective, and creates only a pinch of the fear found in Stevenson's actual work. Assonance is also found in a very obvious place.

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