Prose Narrative Criticism Essay

1911 Words Aug 24th, 2013 8 Pages
Prose Narrative Criticism:
“Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” and “Greasy Lake”
Studies in Literature
Kathleen Lohr
August 25, 2012

Prose Narrative Criticism While reading any composition of literature, the reader must address how they will connect with the text. To do this, the reader considers different forms of literary criticism. There are an abundance of approaches to literary criticism. For the purposes of looking at “Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” by Robert Louis Stevenson and “Greasy Lake” by T.C. Boyle, the narratological approach will be used here. The narratological critical approach to assessing literature expects that the audience reads to “understand how events are constructed and through what point
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Many musicians wrote songs about doing drugs such as cocaine in the 1980’s. In “Greasy Lake”, the narrator describes himself and his friends as “dangerous characters, wearing torn up leather jackets, slouched around with toothpicks in our mouths, sniffing glue and ether, and what somebody said was cocaine” (Boyle, 1981). These events are accurate to the time period, which shaped the characters and events in “Greasy Lake”. A noteworthy theme of “Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” is the natural duality of human beings. Dr. Jekyll is in a constant struggle to conceal Mr. Hyde from the world because he considers him to be indecent and capable of evil. Throughout the novella we are lead to believe that Mr. Hyde is some sort of deranged killer who has fled London after murdering a man. It isn’t until the final chapter that the reader learns from a note from Dr. Jekyll that Mr. Hyde is a persona of Jekyll. Jekyll claims that he allowed himself to become Hyde when he felt unacceptable impulses. This allowed him to act, free of morals, and later return to being the respectable Dr. Jekyll. This arrangement didn’t hurt his reputation, and satisfied his darker half. Therefore, he would drink a self-created potion to become Hyde whenever he wanted to. Dr. Jekyll clearly had two personalities that were battling to be dominant. The theme of human duality is represented in the upstanding, well liked