Stevenson’s “The strange case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde” was one of the most famous works of horror fiction of all time in English literature. It was based in the nineteenth century. It reflects the influence of two important ideological forces in the Victorian era. The text uses gothic and detective elements to interest the reader as they were very popular at the time. The focus of the text is concentrated on the issue of Jekyll and Hyde’s personality which was described as someone who lived a double life of outward sanctity and secret iniquity. This is so that it would to create a mystery for the reader as they are trying to unravel who Hyde is.
The writer emphasises the idea of Mr Hyde being “apelike” as he knew that it would interest the Victorian reader as they were horrified by Darwin’s theory that humans evolved from apes. The setting that the writer chose was in the wealthiest part of London called, “ Cavendish square”, which is where the character Dr Jekyll, a respectable man, lived. On the other hand, the writer presents Dr Jekyll’s evil side, Mr Hyde, as being a criminal as he chooses the setting to be in Soho, a poor part of London, which is known as “thieves den”. The writer connects the reader with the surroundings as it makes the novel more interesting. In addition it reflects the Victorian rich‘s fear of morale. He also mentions the poor parts of London as in the Victorian days, only wealthy people could afford to purchase books, which is why he states the poor areas as rich people consider them to be not up to their standard.
Stevenson used lots of different genres to emphasize the theme of the story. The main ones where- Gothic horror and detective, as Victorians took inter...
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... give quick description for each character but it also it creates an exciting was of reading the book. They tie into detective genre as they exhibit the idea of clues that detectives relate to.
In conclusion all the themes used directly appeal to Victorian readers of “Jekyll and Hyde” such as decline of religion, society’s fear of Darwin’s theory, the battle between good and evil ,duality of human nature. Stevenson uses a lot of unique techniques to create such interesting character and also to make the novel as exciting as he can, by combining together genre that appear to Victorian readers, the detective and the gothic. The Novella that he created has considered to still hold a lot of meaning today. In addition Stevenson’s issue towards the personality of others and describing the characters as “being two faced”, created a remarkable story.
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