Essay on The Strange Case Of Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde

Essay on The Strange Case Of Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde

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In The Strange Case of Dr, Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Robert Louis Stevenson presents a battle of good versus evil. Doctor Jekyll, a scientist once renowned and praised for his social prowess in the community, delves into his hidden desires; performing unnatural experiments on himself, he transforms into his inner evil, Edward Hyde. Hyde has a gruesome appearance, suspect of deformity, as he is the very fabrication of evil . After running rampant on the town, committing minor and severe acts of crime, Hyde is defeated by Jekyll’s self-sacrificial suicide. In Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Rappaccini’s Daughter, there is an outward theme of moral corruption. Signor Giacomo Rappaccini, a scientist denounced for his dark methods, performs controversial experiments on those around him; after having made his daughter, Beatrice, poisonous since birth, he targets her admirer, Giovanni Guasconti, to join her. Having been warned of Beatrice’s ailments, Giovanni receives antidote curated by Professor Pietro Baglioni. However, unknowing of the drug’s fatal effects, Giovanni gives the antidote to Beatrice, effectively killing her. Though Stevenson’s Jekyll and Hyde and Hawthorne’s Rappaccini’s Daughter both depict morally corrupt men of questionable science, their approaches are quite different.
Jekyll and Hyde and Rappaccini’s Daughter are similar in many aspects; one such aspect is the theme of moral corruption. With the topic of moral corruption comes evil; everyone is innately evil. Dr. Jekyll’s innate evil was hidden for many years until he performed his experiments and transformed into Hyde. Jekyll states that as Hyde he, “...could walk steadfastly and securely on his upward path doing the good things in which he found his pleasure and no longer exp...


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...s are taken into account; Jekyll and Hyde is about a man who isolates himself through self-performed experiments, while Rappaccini’s Daughter tells of a girl condemned to a solemn life, bred of the experiments carried out by her father. All points aside, both stories exhibit the effects of society on an individual. Society can affect how one views themselves and cause them to alter their image to appeal to the majority. Beatrice’s societal isolation caused her depression, therefore causing Rappaccini to experiment on Giovanni, which in turn led to Beatrice’s death. Jekyll hid his dark side from the world for so long in fear of it affecting his reputation, that once it was finally let free, it went out of control. Society is powerful and it can ultimately determine one’s success in life, whether in happiness or stance; if not monitored, serious repercussions can occur.

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