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Deformity In Mr Hyde

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Another theme in Stevenson’s novella is how he describes Mr Hyde as detestable without any prominent features. Those who encounter Hyde notice he projects a different type of appearance, and while they cannot verbalise it, they feel that something is wrong. When Mr Enfield describes Hyde’s appearance to Mr Utterson, he says, He is not easy to describe. There is something wrong with his appearance; something displeasing, something downright detestable. I never saw a man I so disliked, and yet I scarce know why. He must be deformed somewhere; he gives a strong feeling of deformity, although I couldn’t specify the point. He’s an extraordinary looking man, and yet I really can name nothing out of the way. His deformities are hidden from plain sight, but human nature notices them. Michael Davis states, ‘Hyde’s pathology, real enough in its effects on others, is nonetheless ghostly rather than material, somehow present yet simultaneously absent, and so beyond the scope of mapping or diagnosis in physical terms.’ While Hyde is a person and has a tangible effect on those around him, the features that produce such an effect are invisible. By saying they are “ghostly”, a haunting aura surrounds Hyde, which also creates the terrified emotion in those around him. Conversely, if one were to study Hyde and his features, they would find no apparent difference between him and others. This phenomenon suggests that there is a factor deeper than his physical deformity in the
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