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Human Nature: The Double Character of Dr. Jekyll

Powerful Essays
Naturally, it is human nature to yearn for some sort of evil. Sinning is common on a daily basis. Kids lean towards destruction. Countless people have the urge to gamble at casinos. Human beings are lustful creatures and have sexual notions constantly in their minds. Evil is not something that can be avoided. For those who appear perfect, their "evil" is well hidden. Thus, ."..humanity is...synonymous with the struggle of good and evil" (Abbey, et al. 328). Robert Louis Stevenson's The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde centers on the dual nature of the human personality through the good and evil facets of Dr. Jekyll's character.

Victorian morals are significant in the establishment of duality due to the moral conflict it initiates. Stevenson introduced the theme of duality not merely because of contrasting characters and an appealing storyline. Present evidence indicates that Victorian society was constantly disturbed by an inescapable sense of division (Saposnik 88). The presence of two opposing personalities conflicted with the Victorian conscience. Likewise, Victorian society feared the type of behaviors and person represented by Jekyll and Hyde. Hyde is considered the "brutal embodiment of the moral, social, political, and economic threats which shook the uncertain Victorian world" (Saposnik 100). Everything about Jekyll was eerie and defied the Victorian ethics from his physical appearance to his inconsiderate actions. The setting also played an important role with Victorian morals. London was a location where virtue and vice was most clearly present. This is where evil battled the good of Christianity. London was the center of the Victorian world and was the great arena of moral conflict as well....

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