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Analysis Of Robert Louis Stevenson The Strange Case Of Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde

941 words - 4 pages

“I was still cursed with my duality of purpose; and as the first edge of my penitence wore off, the lower side of me, so long indulged, so recently chained down, began to growl for licence. Not that I dreamed of resuscitating Hyde; . . . no, it was in my own person that I was once more tempted to trifle with my conscience. . .( Stevenson p. 60)” When Robert Louis Stevenson set out writing his literary masterpiece The Strange Case of, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde he embarked on a voyage through the world of human nature, no easy task, but he did an excellent job of it as demonstrated by the former quote. Stevenson shows the reader through numerous specimens of his writing that human nature is not as his time dictated dichotomous; four excellent vessels through which the reader can explore human nature with, just as Stevenson did, are as follows: Dr. Henry Jekyll, Mr. Edward Hyde, Mr. John Utterson, and the polar opposite of Jekyll Dr. Hastie Lanyon
Dr. Henry Jekyll is the first, and most predominant vessel to embark on Stevenson’s journey through humanity. Contrary to the seemingly obvious conclusion one may come to while reading Stevenson’s classical masterpiece Dr. Jekyll is the true evil of the book. This is so because he knows that at any moment something could cause harm to him or others, which eventually happens as he murders an old man and tramples a young schoolgirl. Dr. Jekyll himself even states “I knew well that I risked death; for any drug that so potently controlled and shook the very fortress of identity, might, by the least scruple of an overdose or at the least inopportunity in the moment of exhibition, utterly blot out that immaterial tabernacle which I looked to it to change (51).” He knows that the should stop using his methods because his methods have gone wrong and has started to bring harm to others, but he chooses not to, and so on goes Dr. Jekyll’s evil journey into the great unknown.
The Second vessel, a leviathan on Stevenson’s journey into the nature of humanity is Mr. Edward Hyde, a small deformed man, something signifying evil in literature, but even he is far less evil than Dr. Jekyll because, unlike Dr. Jekyll, there lies an small unbalanced amount of good inside of him (Hyde) . Dr Jekyll, perhaps, states it best when he says “The pleasures which I made haste to seek in my disguise were, as I have said, undignified; I would scarce use a harder term. But in the hands of Edward Hyde, they soon began to turn toward the monstrous. (54)” meaning, that though he means to do no harm to people or himself, the evil in Hyde was radically greater than that...

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