Dr. Jeckyll And Mr. Hyde- Change Of The Balance Of Power Essay, Research Paper
In Stevenson’s book Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde there is an interesting balance of power. The control over Dr. Jekyll’s body greatly chaqnges throughout the book. In the beginning of the story, Dr. Jekyll drinks a potion and becomes Mr. Hyde for only a short time. However, by the end of the book, he is drinking the antidote every half-hour to keep Hyde from taking over his identity.
Dr. Jekyll is a prominent scientist who stumbles upon a potion that gives him a new identity. He confesses to many secret indiscretions, which he enjoyed greatly as a child. When he becomes older he realizes that societys knowledge of his pleasures, he would be shunned, and learns to supress his desire for them. When he first makes the compound he discovers that he can release his evil side by becoming an entirely different person, physically, but retains his soul. As Mr. Hyde, he has the ability to indulge in his pleasures without ruining Jekyll’s good name. Jekyll can control his transformations, taking a potion when he wants to be Mr. Hyde and then takes the same one to become himself again. At this point in the story he has total control over the transformation process.
Jekyll becomes so obsessed with his “other self” that he begins to lose control of the metamorphosis. Hyde begins to appear merely when Jekyll reminisces about the unmentionable deeds he commited as Hyde. When he falls asleep, he wakes up as Mr. Hyde. As the novel progresses, Hyde’s immoral ways become more prominent. He beats the kindly Sir Danvers Carew to death for no reason. It is almost as if Hyde needs to proclaim his dominance by destroying pure goodness, as he represents pure evil.
Dr. Jekyll creates a being where he can yield to his pleasures without being discovered. He loves the freedom and unrestrained nature of Hyde, therefore giving Hyde the opportunity to gradually overpower the good of Dr. Jekyll. By the end of the novel, Jekyll is taking massive doses of the antidote to keep his own identity. He becomes frantic, trying to desperatly control Hyde. Jekyll runs out of his potion when he hears Poole, and Utterson breaking into his cabinet. Driven by the horrible idea that someone might discover him in his present state of mind, he commits suicide, in order to banish Hyde from the world. Hyde shows his final power by taing over Jekyll’s body while he is dying. Poole and Utterson find Hyde convulsing on the floor.
The relationship between Jekyll and Hyde changes throughout the story. At the beginning Jekyll welcomed Hyde as a release, but at the end a curse. Jekyll and Hyde end the book by having a love/hate relationship. Jekyll hates Hyde for the power Hyde has over him. Hyde hates Jekyll; because of Jekyll’s hatred, and because of the knowledge that Jekyll can destroy him by committing suicide. Jekyll destroys Hyde inthe end, but he sacrifices his identity, losing himself in the corpse of Hyde forever.