Dr. Jekly & Mr. Hyde Essay, Research Paper
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
The focal point of this essay is to define the life of Dr. Henry Jekyll, and the transformation he went through in becoming Edward Hyde. Dr. Henry Jekyll is a physician in London. He is very well respected and is currently experimenting the dual nature of man kind. Edward Hyde is a manifestation of Dr. Jekyll’s personality. He is accused of committing evil acts throughout the novel.
The first scene consists of Mr. Richard Enfield’s and Mr. Utterson walking along a street in London. Mr. Enfield has a recollection of a previous incident in which he witnessed an extremely unpleasant man trampling upon a small screaming girl while this man was running somewhere. A large crowd had gathered around and they saw the man, Edward Hyde. The crowd forced the man to give money to this girl for trampling over her. Hyde did not run over her for any reason. He just did it out of spite and evil. He represents all the evil in the world. The reaction of others to him is one of horror because while looking at him, others feel a desire to strike out at him and kill him. His physical appearance brings out the worst evil in other people. Since Hyde represents evil, he is symbolically represented as being much smaller than Dr. Jekyll.
I believe Dr. Jekyll created Hyde because he had a theory that man has a good side and a bad side. While investigating this, he developed a potion that could release the evil in a person in the form of a totally different person. Then this person could commit any evil act it wanted, and then drink the potion to return back to normal. The only problem with this is the fact that he drank this potion so many times, he was no longer able to control this process. He was unable to transform back into Dr. Jekyll.
Another example of Hyde’s evil is in the killing of Sir Danvers Carew. Sir Danvers appears to have been killed for no apparent reason. The murder of Sir Danvers was seen by a maid who was working nearby. She states that Hyde meet with a man in the street. After the two exchanged words, Mr. Hyde lifted his heavy walking stick and clubbed the old man to death. This tells us the reader that Mr. Hyde has grown in fury. From trampling over a child in the first scene, he now commits murder for no reason. I believe Hyde killed Sir Danvers because Sir Danvers was described as being a peaceful and good man. Hyde represents pure evil, so naturally he would hate good gentlemen. The only reason why Sir Danvers dies, was because he was a good man. He not only killed Sir Danvers’, he had to trample over him. The goodness of Sir Danvers brings out the most intense evil in Hyde.
From the source “Selves and Shadows” we receive an indepth look into the novel. David Hume asks the question, “Would any man, who is walking along, tread as willingly on another’s gouty toes, whom he has no quarrel with, as on the hard flint and pavement? Well, here is that man, and his total blindness to any feeling but his own is central to his character. As Jekyll puts it, when he is eventually driven to attempt a choice between his two lives.” It is very obvious that no man would want to start a fight, if there is no reason to fight. Since Mr. Hyde represents the evil in men, Dr. Jekyll releases his evil through his other side, Mr. Hyde. Mr. Hyde is Jekyll’s way of releasing his anger.
In the final chapter called, “Jekyll’s Full Statement” Jekyll reveals everything. He states, “No one but me knows my true nature. All these years, the public has seen only a veneer of my real self.” This is so very true due mostly to the fact that no one knew Mr. Hyde was a part of Dr. Jekyll. Jekyll constantly emphasizes the greatness of his background. He reminds us of his wealthy family, and great education. But he also states “that man is not truly one, but truly two.”
In conclusion, Dr. Jekyll needed something, or someone to represent the evil which has built up inside of him. He created this through experiments, which lead to a potion. This potion transformed him anytime he wanted. He was transformed into Mr. Hyde. I believe evil is just a small portion of men, that is why Mr. Hyde had a dwarfish appearence. The main point being, was that the potion took over his life, and Dr. Jekyll finally realizes he is unable to transform back into his goodness. He attemts to commit suicide, as this is his only way of destroying Mr. Hyde.