Comparing Stevenson's Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde

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Martin uncovers and criticizes the hypocrisy of the Victorian society by following Stevenson’s course of events. In doing so, she better identifies and relates the parallels and thus helps the readers appreciate the emphasized differences in the two novels. Stevenson paints a picture of the Victorian society from the public perspectives and thus hides its hypocritical issues and repression of the gentlemen. Martin, on the other hand, addresses these issues through further revelations of these men’s personal lives. Specifically, Martin portrays Jekyll on a much more personal level, instead of from the public expectations. Through the voice of Mary - the housemaid, and the events in Jekyll’s house, Martin unveils Jekyll’s increasing desperations.…show more content…
Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the entire story revolves around the entitled gentlemen - the pinnacles of the Victorian society. The novel introduces Dr. Jekyll as “M.D.,D.C.L, LL.D., F.R.S.,” and Mr. Utterson as a lawyer (Stevenson 13). The “great Dr. Lanyon” lives in “[the] citadel of medicine” (Stevenson 14). Their professions are especially respected. These high class gentlemen have to uphold to their titles and images of righteousness and self-control. These expectations dictate them to be public and civilized figures, sometimes necessarily actors. They have to outwardly uphold to these ideals to keep their “reputation … under shelter” (Stevenson 63). Hence, they cannot express their emotions or dependence. In Stevenson’s novel, these men are not married and dependent on women in every way. However, with this repression come the possibilities of “the primitive duality of man” as they, like everyone, have privates and potentially scrupulous lives (Stevenson 59). Also, these restraints imply certain sexual orientations were repressed, as well as violent, immoral actions. Hyde/Jekyll embodies of the separate lives lived by the Victorian gentlemen. Physically and symbolically, Hyde exemplifies the freedom repressed in Jekyll, anger, emotions, and the exploits of his “vicarious depravity” (Stevenson 63). The Victorian hypocritical expectations spark the conflicts of trying to satisfy both a high standard public image and a normal individual…show more content…
Certainly, Hyde, coupled with his odious actions, possesses an unexplainable deformity. There is “something wrong with his appearance; something displeasing, something downright detestable” (Stevenson 9). In both novels, everyone who has seen him feels an immediate aversion: “Mr. Hyde, who had once visited her master and for whom she had conceived a dislike” (Stevenson 20), or “he seem[s] to come out of the black as if he [is] made of it” (Martin 88). Because his appearances do not agree with those of a gentleman, Hyde shows feminine qualities. He is heard “weeping as a woman” (Stevenson 40). He is more of a “dwarf” than as the “tall fine build of a man” (Stevenson 38), and even “hardly taller than Mary” (Martin 89). Both novels paint the ugly picture of Hyde in accordance with his wicked

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