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

Jekyll And Hyde - what view of human nature does stevenson present in jekyll and hyde?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

What view of human nature does Stevenson present in 'The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde? In 1886, Robert Louis Stevenson wrote 'The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde'. It was a story about how a respectable, upper class man turned into a beast with no morals or dignity. It seemed that Stevenson wanted to show how good & evil could easily clash, much to Victorian society's disgust. In the novel, he used many techniques and different situations to argue with society. He tried to prove human nature, and how everyone has two sides to him or her. It was around this time that Darwin had presented his theory of evolution to the world, and it is in 'The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde' that Stevenson presents his argument. Growing up in the Victorian era, Stevenson had a very strict, biased upbringing. He was born into a Presbyterian way of life, and was taught the values of the belief by his families nurse; this meant that he was taught to believe the bible and nothing that contradicts it. ...read more.

Middle

For example, Utterson quotes in Jekyll's house " the plate was of silver, the napery elegant, a good picture hung upon the walls." Yet, when Hyde is outside, London is described as " district of some city in a nightmare." The division of personality in man fascinated Stevenson, he believed you could be good & evil, that man had two sides to him. In Jekyll & Hyde, Jekyll is portrayed as good, the novel shows this by stating "a large, well-made, smooth-faced man of fifty every mark a capacity of kindness". This shows that Jekyll is a kind, giving man. Whereas, Hyde is portrayed as a strange, brutal man, this is shown by the quote "he gave a strong feeling of deformity" this shows that he wasn't normal, and wasn't quite man, something lower down the process of evolution, the Victorian people would have panicked at the idea of this, that evolution was suddenly turning backwards. So, Stevenson was obviously trying to present that a man can have two very different sides, that it was human nature. ...read more.

Conclusion

Here he is once again relating to Hyde and the lower class to being careless and heartless. By using the word 'ape-like' it is also insinuating that Hyde has gone right back to the start of evolution. Secondly, at the scene of Hyde's first crime, the doctor states " there is something wrong with his appearance; something displeasing, something downright detestable." This quote refers that more than one person in society detests Hyde, this shows a direct relationship with Darwin's theory, and how that everyone in society hated the idea of human nature having two sides to it. Although, when Utterson goes to visit Hyde, the maid shows an interest in what he has done. It seems Stevenson is trying to show that although society had to repress their feelings, they secretly did have a sly interest in the wonder and concept of human nature. In Conclusion, Stevenson showed a lot about his thoughts and his view on human nature, and how society viewed it in a negative, demeaning way. He also showed how although the Victorian people put on an act of disgust, although they secretly showed an interest. English Pre-1914 Prose Coursework Lewis Clarke 10C3 ...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 Stevenson present good and evil in "Jekyll and Hyde"?The Victorian era in ...

    Perhaps he is not only pressured by high society but also by religion as when Hyde is liberated he scrawls blasphemies all across the Bible in Jekyll's cabinet, "a copy of the pious work for which Jekyll has several times expressed a great esteem, annotated, in his own hand, with startling blasphemies."

  2. Jekyll and Hyde chapter by chapter summary.

    Throughout both of these extremely short chapters, Stevenson is extremely up front and precise in his descriptions, using them as a means to get to an end. The lack of detail plagues all of this work, and often questions remain considering elements of the plot.

  1. Discuss Stevensons portrayal of the nature of good and evil and the dual nature ...

    Thus the quote informs us that Utterson sticks to conventional Victorian traditionalism, yet aches with boredom in doing so.

  2. Pre 1914 Prose

    The ego's purpose is to keep the id under control. Jekyll wanted to explore his other nature because as he was a respectable Victorian gentleman therefore he could only act in a respectable way and couldn't act in the opposite way therefore in the novella Dr Jekyll creates a potion

  1. Prose Study Coursework

    The way the 'o' sound is repeated many times, and how the sentence flows off the tongue, gives a constant reminder throughout the sentence of the fear that Jim faces, and the decisions he is required to make. In the future, does Jim return to the pirates in hope of

  2. 'How does the Author, Robert Louis Stevenson, present Victorian attitudes to the nature of ...

    Although, Jekyll and Hyde does feature one important gothic horror element... 'The Laboratory'; creator of the mysteries of strange, unusual and evil Mr. HYDE. Not only this but the laboratory was an important symbol of Victorian life, it represented uses of science, chemical potions and the possibility of overcoming the power of nature and mankind.

  1. What view of human nature does Steven present in the novel, The Strange Case ...

    Jekyll is a very different character to Hyde, everyone likes him, he is well known about town and he is well looked upon. He is kind, and when socialising with friends he is very well liked. just like his friend " Richard Enfield...

  2. What view of human nature does Stevenson present in the novel "The strange case ...

    In the novel Victorian England is described through vivid scenes and the expected morals of society are presented through role models such as the lawyer (Mr. Utterson). The novel makes numerous references to, and uses aspects of the Victorian society within its plot.

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