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Who or what is Edward Hyde?

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Who or what is Edward Hyde? Due to the Victorian background of this book we are led to believe Edward Hyde is a completely different character to Henry Jekyll but we soon start to find out that they are actually one person, but with just a slight physical and mental change. Some readers in Victorian times would have interpreted the story as a struggle between good and evil, with Jekyll being the 'hardworking, normal guy' and Hyde being the 'twisted, evil person'. This was emphasised by the Christian belief of humans having a divided soul. If your soul had been good, on judgement day you would be saved into heaven where as if it was bad you would be damned to hell. During 1859 Darwin was showing his ideas of humans descending from apes or simpler forms of life this confused and scared many Victorians, they were know longer unique they were part of one species among many. ...read more.


Enfield had described Hyde as 'being deformed'. This tells us that people saw Hyde as just being very ugly and having something wrong with him but they just can't see exactly what it is, maybe he just didn't seem to be human. In parts of the book Hyde is referred to as an, 'ape like creature' this could be a connection to Darwin's theory, which had been published nearly 30 years earlier. What started as a quest for the unknown ended in disaster for Henry Jekyll. As a young scientist Henry Jekyll stumbled upon a chemical potion containing a special salt that when drank created a physical and mental change to him. This caused Edward Hyde to be born, this creature was all evil, and no goodness was contained within him. All of the suppressed badness that Jekyll had controlled over the years was released into the open as Hyde. This creature not only a physically smaller being he also had evil urges that led Hyde to binge drink on alcohol, and have uncontrollable urges to terrorise and physically harm unexpectant passer bys. ...read more.


Also 'audibly shattered' implies the shear force of Mr Hyde and even though he is able to hear the shattering of the bones inside the body it still doesn't make him stop, he continues with the beating just so he is able to get his 'kick' out of seeing someone in pain. Having understood the need for scientific experimentation, do we assume all experiments are necessary? In the case of Jekyll I think he needed to find out the unknown, so he could be satisfied by his evil side, which he had locked up for years. If the experiments had been more closely controlled in the beginning this could have been a better ending. I think that taking potions (drugs) to dabble with mans dual nature is never a recommended path. The best method of release is always the natural way, let the inner good and evil show itself when it is necessary. Stephanie Perry A10 ...read more.

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