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Sofia BejaranoMs. KreuzkampEnglish 2, Period 222 January 2018What Lies Beneath “Inside each of us, there is the seed of both good and evil. It’s a constant struggle as to which one will win. And one cannot exist without the other” (Eric Burden). Robert Louis Stevenson’s novella documents the journey of a man and his evil urges.  Although some believe that The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is about a monster and a man as two separate beings, it’s truly about the duality of human nature, the fact that man is, at once, both good and evil. This is shown through Dr. Jekyll, a man who wishes to express his urges without the feeling of guilt or without consequences. Thus, his “dual nature” is created and is disguised as Mr. Hyde.Dr. Jekyll is the perfect good guy who follows the rules. He reads books about religion, does charity work, and eats his vegetables. The only issue is that he wishes deep down, to be evil. His name provides a clue: “Je” in French means “I,” while “kyll” means kill. “To this rule, Dr Jekyll was no exception; and as he now sat on the opposite side of the fire—a large, well-made, smooth-faced man of fifty, with something of a slyish cast perhaps, but every mark of capacity and kindness—you could see by his looks that he cherished for Mr Utterson a sincere and warm affection” (Stevenson 18). Just to show how “normal” Dr. Jekyll seemed, it states that Mr. Utterson could see the kindness in his face. His looks and how he portrayed himself definitely deceived many. “It was on the moral side, and in my own person, that I learned to recognise the thorough and primitive duality of man; I saw that, of the two natures that contended in the field of my consciousness, even if I could rightly be said to be either, it was only because I was radically both” (Stevenson 53). The crazy thing is that Dr. Jekyll acknowledges that he has two sides to him. He knows he can attempt or try to control the evil side of him, but in the end, it becomes too powerful for him to handle. The crazy thing is that Dr. Jekyll acknowledges that he has two sides to him. He knows he can attempt or try to control the evil side of him, but in the end, it becomes too powerful for him to handle. While he changes form, he goes through extreme pain which he somehow withstands. The disguise of his vile aspirations is shown through Mr. Hyde. This evil can be seen in some cases, in the “perfect” people because they’re expected to not have any flaws. Some might become overwhelmed with this and crack, and turn evil, just as Dr. Jekyll did.Dr. Jekyll has the intent of purifying his good side from his bad, but in the end, he ends up separating the bad alone, while leaving his former self. “Instantly the spirit of hell awoke in me and raged. With a transport of glee, I mauled the unresisting body, tasting delight from every blow; and it was not till weariness had begun to succeed, that I was suddenly, in the top fit of my delirium, struck through the heart by a cold thrill of terror. A mist dispersed; I saw my life to be forfeit; and fled from the scene of these excesses, at once glorying and trembling, my lust of evil gratified and stimulated, my love of life screwed to the topmost peg (Stevenson 60). Mr. Hyde has a passion for being violent and derives enormous pleasure from extremely aggressive and brutal acts. He transforms between Dr. Jekyll and his evil side in order to fulfill his evil desires. “‘He is not easy to describe. There is something wrong with his appearance; something displeasing, something downright detestable. I never saw a man I so disliked, and yet I scarce know why. He must be deformed somewhere; he gives a strong feeling of deformity, although I couldn’t specify the point'” (Stevenson 9). The “disguise” began to take over the body of Dr. Jekyll and changed the way he looked. The appearance of the juggernaut was very unappealing and disturbed those who saw him. “He had in his hand a heavy cane, with which he was trifling; but he answered never a word, and seemed to listen with an ill-contained impatience. And then all of a sudden he broke out in a great flame of anger, stamping with his foot, brandishing the cane, and carrying on (as the maid described it) like a madman. The old gentleman took a step back, with the air of one very much surprised and a trifle hurt; and at that Mr Hyde broke out of all bounds and clubbed him to the earth” (Stevenson 20). This is just one of the examples of how vicious and terrifying Mr. Hyde is. You really don’t want to run into him in a dark alley. You’ll most likely end up dead. He has no compassion or sympathy whatsoever and will kill anyone he wants, no questions asked. Just as most villains in movies, Mr. Hyde shows no pity or concern for anyone. He will kill who he wants, when he wants, and no one can stop him.Even though Dr. Jekyll is considered “good” and Mr. Hyde is considered “bad”, both are evil in a way. Dr. Jekyll has the evil desires which causes him to be disguised as an actual evil animal type thing. “Henry Jekyll became too fanciful for me. He began to go wrong, wrong in mind; and though of course I continue to take an interest in him for old sake’s sake as they say, I see and I have seen devilish little of the man” (Stevenson 12). Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde demonstrates the duality of man’s nature, and it is the choices we make that determine good or evil.  Henry Jekyll is a product of the upper social class in Victorian Society in which there were certain behaviors that were expected of a 19th century gentleman.  These social niceties excluded certain pleasurable indulgences that Jekyll wished to partake in. “‘Well, I tell you so again,’ continued the lawyer. ‘I have been learning something of young Hyde.’ The large handsome face of Dr Jekyll grew pale to the very lips, and there came a blackness about his eyes. ‘I do not care to hear more,’ said he. ‘This is a matter I thought we had agreed to drop'” (Stevenson 18). Dr. Jekyll becomes worried that his disguise will be revealed. He has a darkness within him that he sometimes shows, like at this moment, that demonstrates how much he doesn’t want Mr. Hyde to be discovered. “‘There must be something else,’ said the perplexed gentleman. ‘There is something more, if I could find a name for it. God bless me, the man seems hardly human!… The last, I think; for O my poor old Harry Jekyll, if ever I read Satan’s signature upon a face, it is on that of your new friend'” (Stevenson 15). Others began to realize that there was something wrong with Dr. Jekyll. They thought it was unworldly and very peculiar. This “duality” can compare to the movie Split but in a sort of different way. In the movie, he has a variety of different personalities but doesn’t change form until the end. In The Strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the “different personalities” is the different form, disguise, otherwise known as Mr. Hyde.”Everyone has his own idea of good and evil and must choose to follow the good and fight evil as he conceives them” (Pope Francis). Dr. Jekyll was unable to manage his evil urges which resulted in Mr. Hyde overtaking and controlling all actions of Dr. Jekyll. Good and evil are all around us in the world today; in our society, in those we communicate with, and in those who we watch on tv. Everyone has a “dual nature” whether they realize it or not. Everyone has an evil darkness deep down inside of them. It’s up to you to be able to control the malicious and iniquitous feelings inside of you. It’s your decision. Do you want to live a life of good? Or a life of immorality?Works CitedStevenson, Robert Louis, and Roger Luckhurst. Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Other Tales. Oxford University Press, 2008.”Eric Burdon Quotes.” BrainyQuote, Xplore,


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