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

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

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Life of the Setting
Throughout the thriller-mystery story of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Mr. Utterson, the friendly lawyer, tries to figure out the reason behind why Dr. Jekyll, his friend and client, gives all his money in his will to a strange man and murderer named Mr. Hyde. Readers learn from the ominous third person point of view the worries of Mr. Utterson and ride along for his search of Mr. Hyde. In The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, R.L. Stevenson employs characterization, imagery, and motifs of weather to construct complex characters and create eerie settings, which parallel with the mood of the characters.
Throughout the story, Stevenson characterizes Mr. Hyde as a strange man with odd features whom nobody seems to like. The novella starts out with an account that displays Hyde’s evil nature and lack of conscience as he injures and murders innocent people. Before the readers even know the truth about the real Mr. Hyde, they are forced to confront his despicable nature. Whenever someone describes Mr. Hyde’s unusual features, they say he seems to be deformed, but does not appear to have “any namable malformation” (16). Strangely enough, most people in London know about Mr. Hyde and though they have never seen him in person, they still know of his ‘deformity.’ Whenever Hyde comes around, the setting changes into fog and darkness. Mr. Hyde represents the dark, evil side that people hide, and so when he comes into play in the story, the setting changes. It becomes foggy because of the uncertainty of Mr. Hyde and his background, because no one really knows about him. Since few have encountered Hyde and he usually only appears in the dead of night, peoples’ descriptions of him vary, but they all agr...


... middle of paper ...


...he fog settled down again upon that part” at the home of Mr. Hyde (23). Again the fog comes back to make a point of the mystery of Mr. Hyde. The fog represents the uncertainty that lies within Mr. Hyde. Mr. Hyde cannot be found because of Mr. Utterson’s timing; during the day, he hides behind the mask of Dr. Henry Jekyll. Only at night he comes out as his evil self, then retreats back to the door and once again hides in plain sight, behind Dr. Jekyll.
R.L. Stevenson incorporates these literary elements to show the importance of the setting. Through the characterization of Mr. Hyde, Stevenson utilizes his strange features to make the story chilling and suspenseful. Although people now do not share the same fears as those in nineteenth century London, Stevenson still creates an environment where people’s curiosity of the unknown, Mr Hyde, makes their blood run cold.

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