Stevenson’s Portrayal of Good an Evil and the Dual Nature of Men in Dr.Jekyll and Mr.Hyde
Robert Louis Stevenson wrote the novel Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde in the
late1800. This novel portrays the idea of a dual nature in man; it
shows this as good and evil. Stevenson was fascinated with the duality
in man and how in public there were outstanding gentlemen with high
status but in reality liked to indulge in the pleasures but their
status stopped them.
He had two main influences for the novel one was his Nurse. As a child
Stevenson was very ill and spent most of his time in bed, during this
time his Nurse would tell him stories and read out the Old Testament.
The second influence he had was where he grew up. He was born in
Edinburgh. Edinburgh had two sides to it; one the extremely
respectable and highly religious, the other represented brothels and
shadiness. This idea of good and evil strengthened his fascination
about duality. Both his nurse and where he grew up supplied him with
the idea for Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.
The story of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde is largely allegorical. The first
chapter starts with two main characters talking a walk, when they see
a door it is described as “bore in every feature the marks of
prolonged and sordid negligence”. This door stuck out from the rest of
the street since all the other buildings have been well kept, this is
the first sign of duality in the book.
The door makes Mr Enfield remember a past event when he met Mr Hyde.
He watches as Hyde tramples on a little girl; he is described as a
“juggernaut”. Stevenson makes a little girl the first victim of Hyde
because children represent innocence, and only someone evil would do
something like that. Enfield describes him as giving “a strong feeling
of deformity” yet he is not easily described.
In the second chapter Utterson finally...