The duality of human nature
Man by nature has good and bad sides. Man is always struggling with these forces to create a balance. If one is stronger than the other, the stronger will overcome the weaker side. Dr Jekyllrealizes the existence of both sides in a person thus separate the two sides which ultimately leadshim to a tragic end. It is unwise for him to temper with nature.
Repression is indisputably a cause of troubles in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The repression here isthat of Victorian England: no sexual appetites, no violence, and no great expressions of emotion,at least in the public sphere. Everything is sober and dignified, and you are really not supposed to be happy. The more Dr. Jekyll¶s forbidden appetites are repressed, the more he desires the life of Mr. Hyde, and the stronger Mr. Hyde grows. This is clearly demonstrated after Dr. Jekyll¶s two-month hiatus from donning the visage of Mr. Hyde; Dr. Jekyll finds that the pull to evil has beenmagnified after months of repression.
In Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, science becomes a cover and justification for supernatural activities.Dr. Jekyll supposedly derives his potion in some sort of scientific manner as opposed to finding amagical amulet or something that releases evil as you might find in other stories. Dr. Jekyll¶s brand of science, however, turns towards the ³transcendental´ (supernatural) while Dr. Lanyon prefers a more traditional set of scientific notions. This disagreement causes an irreparable rift intheir relationship, especially after Dr. Lanyon witnesses Dr. Jekyll¶s transformation with his owneyes.
In Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, curiosity drives the characters to seek knowledge. This curiosity iseither suppressed or fulfilled in each character. Curiosity lacks any negative connotation; instead,characters who do not actively seek to unravel the Jekyll and Hyde mystery may be viewed as passive or weak. Finally, the characters¶ curiosities are, to some degree, transferred over to thereader; we seek to solve the puzzle along with Mr. Utterson.
This novel details two crimes of violence against innocent and helpless citizens: first, a little girl,and second, an elderly man. The violence in the novel centers on Mr. Hyde, and raises thequestion as to whether or not violence is an inherent part of man¶s nature.
Crime and punishment
Mr. Hyde committed various atrocities in London which included deliberately trampling on alittle girl and later murdering Sir Danvers Carew. At first, he was able to evade the law bytransforming back to Dr. Jekyll. Nevertheless, after his brutality towards Sir Danvers waswitness by Dr. Jekyll¶s female servant, who could identify him, Mr. Hyde decided to commitsuicide rather than face the law. Thus, his punishment was death by his own hand.