Background of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Essay

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Background of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde was published in 1886 and is one of the best known of Stevenson's novels. It concerns the way in which an individual is made up of contrary emotions and desires: some good and some evil. Through the curiosity of Utterson, a lawyer, we learn of the ugly and violent Mr Hyde and his odd connection to the respectable Dr Jekyll who pays out a cheque for Hyde's despicable behaviour. A brutal murder follows. The dead man is one of Utterson's clients, Sir Danvers Carew. The murder weapon was, unbelievably a cane …show more content…
Originally, the tale was a straightforward horror story, with no allegorical undertones. After reading the original version to his wife, however, she suggested that more could be done with the story and after initially resisting, Stevenson burned the initial manuscript. The rewriting of the new Jekyll and Hyde took a scant three days.

Immediately upon its publication in January of 1887, it was recognized as a grand work. An anonymous review in The Times praised the book highly, observing that "Nothing Mr. Stevenson has written as yet has so strongly impressed us with the versatility of his very original genius," concluding with the plea that the story "should be read as finished study in the art of fantastic literature." Critics claim that Dr. Jekyll was the first time Stevenson sustained a full-length narrative that was not only exciting, but also a well-composed story with a powerful parable.

The Strange Case of Mr. Jekyll and Hyde is a book based on Robert Louis Stevenson's own experiences, especially with middle-age men in Edinburghand London (this, therefore, is one of the explanations of a lack of female writers). He focused on a milieu he knew well: the clubby, middle-class world of powerful men. And what he knew best about that milieu becomes the driving force of the novel it was a world in which façade counted
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