Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde study guide contains a biography of Robert Louis Stevenson, literature essays, a complete e-text, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis.
In another manifestation of silence in the novel, no one who meets Hyde can describe exactly what it is about his appearance or face that makes him seem evil, but all agree that upon meeting or seeing him, they felt a sense of horror. Finally, much of the important details regarding the nature of Jekyll and Hyde are passed on in written form rather than in speech. In a letter written just before his death, Lanyon instructs Utterson not to read the contents until the death or disappearance of Jekyll. Similarly, Jekyll writes his final confession in a letter to Utterson, rather than sharing his secrets in person. Interestingly, none of these letters provide details into the unseen aspects of Hyde's life. The reader never learns what other evil actions Hyde took, and is only left to wonder at the degree of his violence, brutality, and moral depravity. In Utterson's world, where all details of life and law are placed in official documents, language is regaled as a stronghold of rationality and logic. Therefore, perhaps the lack of language or communication between characters and related to Hyde demonstrates that the supernatural occurrences in the novel push the world beyond the logical, and therefore beyond speech.
Critical Essays term papers (paper 5376) on Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde: DR
Much of the dramatic action in consists of damage control. In other words, Utterson tirelessly works to prevent his good friend Dr. Jekyll from being dragged into the horrid affairs of Mr. Hyde, and Dr. Jekyll goes to the greatest of lengths to prevent his Hyde identity from being discovered, in order to avoid anyone knowing of his somewhat questionable scientific work and morally despicable behavior. The novel takes place in Victorian England and the main characters are all male members of the British upper class. Enfield, Utterson, Lanyon and Jekyll are all acutely aware of social expectations and the importance of appearance. Even in the first chapter, Enfield is wary of sharing his story of the mysterious door because he abhors gossip, as it destroys reputations. In kind, Utterson refrains from informing the police that Jekyll is a close friend of Hyde's following the murder of . Rather, to maintain his friend's reputation and protect his public image, Utterson goes to Jekyll directly to discuss the matter.