In literature dualism refers to a situation where two controversial features occur in alternating manner bringing out suspense and clear understanding of the novel as portrayed by the writer. It occurs in various religious, holy and thoughtful dogmas. For instance, in the case of the strange case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the two are one person but with different characters where one is evil and the other good. The novel uses dualism to portray the man’s nature of adopting different personalities where many incorporate evil and good.
In many cases in life, it seems difficult to understand people who adopt different characters or personality yet behave in a manner that they are two different people attempting to investigate the other. The mysteries and controversies of the people that reveal dual personality is endless hence it requires critical analysis to understand their behavior. It is hard to integrate good and evil in real life without detention yet this people in various cases have managed to hide their evil deeds by adopting a an innocent personality that go unnoticed. For instance, in the case of Mr. Hyde and Dr Jekyll who are one person but who transform themselves from one personality to the other by taking portion. In addition, the taking of the portion alters their appearance that they appear two different people who adopt their respective personalities that suits their role.
In the novel “the strange case of Mr. Hyde and Dr Jekyll”, it describes Mr. Hyde as an individual who alters his personality and appearance by taking a portion that turns him to Dr Jekyll. Mr. Hyde is bound by evil where he had been accused of attempted murder and later convicted of murder of a member of parliament. The portion was made by Jekyll in his laboratory to separate the evil and the good present in all human being however he someday transforms himself to Hyde who accidentally kills a member of parliament as he had been cut off from the world for so long. This makes Jekyll to avoid taking the personality of the Hyde as he feared being detained and convicted for murder, in addition the portion he once used became some how ineffective but he had already learnt on how to alter his personality without using the portion.
However, detective utterson became suspicious of Hyde and Dr Jekyll after learning that Mr. Hyde was the ultimate inheritor of Dr Jekyll property and wealth after his death as recommended by Jekyll will. This made utterson believe that Mr. Hyde was controlling Dr Jekyll in a way yet to be revealed. To Utterson he could not understand why the Jekyll who happened to be Mr. Hyde personal doctor name him to be the inheritor of his wealth; this made Utterson start investigation of the two individuals.
However, even before utterson finishes his investigation a close friend of Dr Lanyons approaches him in order to obtain assistance from the detective as he claimed that he saw a man killing Dr Jekyll. These allegations came after Dr Lanyon was found dead in an unclear circumstances yet he was closely connected to Dr Jekyll. In their attempt to rescue Dr Jekyll they come to find that in the laboratory where Jekyll was seen being killed it was only Mr. Hyde who they found on the floor dead and Jekyll had vanished.
However, the truth is revealed to detective utterson when he comes along the three letters from Lanyon, Jekyll latest will and acknowledgment of the truth behind Hyde and Jekyll. The novel background is setup in a way that as the Utterson learns the truth about the dual the personality of Dr Jekyll at the same time the reader comes to understand the same truth. The suspense in the novel makes the reader curious as he tries to make out the truth of the various happenings in the book. For instance, the reader comes to understand Jekyll and Hyde were one person only that Dr Jekyll could alter his personality through his self made concoction that seem effective at first but its effectiveness deteriorated with time.
In addition, the reader learns that Dr Lanyons died out of the shock after learning that Dr Jekyll would transform himself to Mr. Hyde through taking his home made concoction. More so, the reader learns that Jekyll kills himself immediately after turning to Hyde just before utterson and butler would make their way into the laboratory. Mr. Hyde feared being arrested and convicted for committing murder hence the only way out of this was committing suicide.
The novel has been analyzed literally to understand the writer’s theme in real life. Many claim that the novel symbolizes an idea in the western traditions where people fight with the good and the bad inside them and try to make the world believe that they are good by altering their characters through their self modified methods. Many people though known evil attempt to hide their deeds by adopting the positive characters in public meant to make the world believe they are good. For instance, in spite our evil lusts and deeds done in darkness or hiding we tend to behave as if nothing has happened and when our evil deeds are revealed we tend to change our personality to make the world believe wee have changed to escape the consequences of our deeds.
Secondly, there are others who claim Stevenson the novels writer referred to various religious and spiritual doctrines that tend to bound hypocritical ideas and leaders that remain outwardly clean but in their inside they are filled with evil lusts and desires despite their beliefs standing strongly for whole body cleanliness. For instance, the Bible calls for purity and whole body cleanliness, avoiding our evil lusts and deeds yet there believers who adopt both personality of being pure by day and evil by night.
Thirdly, the Jekyll dualism that could be transformed by taking of the concoction can be compared to the behavior adopted by drug users who tend to change their personality and character after taking the drugs. For instance, many hard drug users tend to kill, commit robbery or even rape when under the influence of this drugs, yet when they don’t take these drugs these evils are not prevalent. However, continued use of these drugs makes one alter his personality easily without even the drugs and the drugs tend to be less effective as they already in their bloodstream. The ultimate end of these drug users tends to be overdose and then committing suicide.
Lastly, many attribute the dualism of the Jekyll to the Scottish traditions that divided their country into various classes, political divisions of England and Ireland as well as interior partition of the Scotland. In addition, it is attributed to the opposing forces of the religious and worldly beliefs that tend to fight against each other. This has made many people be caught in between the two forces hence tend to alter their personality depending on where they are and the kind of group they are with. In addition, the novel looks like the Edinburgh town of Scotland
Stevenson R.L. 1886, strange case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Longmans, Green & co Publisher, Scotland.
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Kathrine L, 2003. Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Norton Critical Edition, oxford publishers, oxford.
Richard D 2005, The Annotated Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, McGraw-Hill publishers, Scotland.