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Profound Duplicity Exhibited By Jekyll As A Reflection Of The Victorian Way Of Life

2331 words - 9 pages

Profound Duplicity Exhibited by Jekyll as a Reflection of the Victorian Way of Life

The Victorian society was filled with many divisions. It consisted of
two extremes, the very wealthy and intense poverty. It was these
divisions that contributed to the causes behind the life of Henry
Jekyll to be split between the two. However, there are many other
reasons as to why Jekyll wanted the best of both worlds.

Within the Victorian period, there were many successes, including
inventions such as the first public railway link between the coal
mines of Darlington and the port of Stockton; this was built by an
engineer named George Stevenson. Also was the improvements in people's
health, this was due to progresses with clean water and better drains.
Victorian scientists, for example, Michael Faraday, also made
discoveries such as various inventions including the telegraph, the
telephone and the electric light. In addition to this the British
Empire had grown like never before. At this point the Victorians were
in a time of sanguinity and fulfilment. However in the country's
capital, London, not everywhere was quite like this. The city was
divided in to two, the rich and the poor. Regents Park was filled with
respectable and hard working people. Conversely a few streets down
backing on to Regents Park, was Soho, a place of squalor and
deprivation, yet the wealthy were not going to make any changes, they
liked the way it was and saw no need for the situation to change.

Religion was an important aspect of Victorian life, and acted as a
form of control of retaining the status quo. It was religion that kept
the two divisions standing. The poor were made to be obedient, and the
rich were imposed levels of expected behaviour. The rich were very God
fearing people, and strict when it came to going to Church, this
included attending Church every Sunday in their best clothes, and
worshipping up to three times a day. Children would read the Bible and
their toys consisted of those relating to Bible stories, such as
Noah's Ark. Within the rich society they were conscious of their
reputation, family mattered and they should have always kept a
professional status, because of this idleness was most certainly a
sin. Despite this it was often found that men throughout the rich,
paid for prostitutes, this is just one of the examples of leading a
double life. The wealthy men of Victorian times were looked upon as
good family people, and had a profession in which they could always
provide for their families. They would not have been able to take part
in sins such as prostitutes in wealthy areas for instance Regents
Park, and so would have to go elsewhere, this means starting a
different life, this being the main theme of 'The Strange Case of
Henry Jekyll and Mr Hyde', duplicity.

Robert Louis Stevenson's...

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