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Why does Stevenson choose not to write a chronological plot told from Dr Jekyll's point of view?

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Why does Stevenson choose not to write a chronological plot told from Dr Jekyll's point of view? Firstly, telling "The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde" from Dr Jekyll's point of view would have presented a number of problems. The elements of tension provided by telling the story from others points of view would be lost, and therefore the definitive style of the book would have to be changed for one less exciting, and the plot would progress far slower. Also, telling the story from different peoples perspectives makes the text physically longer, and although this isn't an essential quality, without the length the story may have been regarded as a short story and not received so much acclaim. Most of the tale is told from the perspective of Mr Utterson, a character who the reader is acquainted with early on in the book. The reader learns he is a lawyer, and also learns of his suspicious nature when he hears the tale of Hyde's viciousness in Story of the Door. It was a good choice to tell the story from his perspective, as when the reader begins this book, they are suspicious from the start. These different perspectives provide insight into the story as well. ...read more.


Also, when Utterson meets Llanyon, he seems far too genial, as if he has something to hide. Another theme that begins in this chapter is Utterson's obsession with coming face to face with Hyde. Chapter 3 is essential, as it gives the reader Uttersons first glimpse of Hyde, and his personal description. Chapter 4 would not be possible if the book was written completely from the point of view of Utterson, as he did not witness the murder of Sir Danvers Carew. The opening of this chapter is told from the maid's point of view, as graphically dictates the murder of Sir Danvers Carew by Hyde's hand. After the initial horror of the murder, the point of view returns to Utterson, and the reader receives another build up of horror to the description of Hyde's subtly grotesque features from the maid's description of him. The reader also meets another character, Mr Hyde's housekeeper. This woman, according to Utterson, also has an evil look about her, which makes the reader wonder whether Hyde chose her for this reason. Finally, the ashes of burned paper in Hyde's fireplace throw an angle of mystery on the chapter. Utterson's point of view also commands Chapter 5, and from the very start the reader is suspicious of Jekyll's experimentation noted by Utterson. ...read more.


to the wrong conclusion, and believes he was killed by Hyde (which is not entirely untrue), again taking the reader with him. The reader also wonders why there is a key ground into the floor, because it would seem that the inhabitant of the room would have wanted to escape. In the final two chapters, the story is explained briefly from two entirely new points of views. Without these, however, the story, as I have mentioned, would come to an abrupt and unfinished conclusion. In the penultimate chapter, Llanyon describes his view of the "case", and tells of the disturbing incidents, which lead to his death. The final chapter, however, only explains the motives of Jekyll to the creation of the potion, and therefore this chapter is devoid of any action. Nevertheless, it is vital in fully explaining the plot to the reader to a satisfactory level. Using letters to tell the story adds another element of mystery, as letters are written all at once, and therefore some chapters do not tell of all the events that have occurred between the previous chapter and the next To conclude, the seemingly random structure of the book, chosen by Stevenson, works very well with the horror and misleading of the different perspectives in the book, and is fundamental in keeping the reader unsuspecting of what will happen next. ...read more.

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  1. Jekyll and Hyde chapter by chapter summary.

    Starting with his description (as described above), although Utterson describes the spotless Jekyll, the reader glimpses another side of Jekyll, a more disturbing side. The entirety of the chapter is full of Jekyll repeatedly lying to Utterson, something that foreshadows the discovery of Jekyll�s lies to all of society.

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