Places of Evil in Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and The Picture of Dorian Gray
AuthorSørensen, Marte Bakkemo
The aim of this thesis is to analyze the two novels Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and The Picture of Dorian Gray. It is focused on finding and viewing the justifications that the two main characters, Dr. Jekyll and Dorian, have for developing into villainous manifestations of themselves. The issue of "the double" and "the other self" is central in this context. The development of the two of the two men is viewd in light of the social conventions created in the texts. In addition to social convention, the thesis focus on various places and relationships that are crucial to Dorian and Jekyll's transformation, and how they have to play various roles and put on performances to keep their secrets and their position in society. All of this is framed within the concept of the Gothic and its aspiration to evoke horror and terror in the reader.Each of the novels have their own chapter with an in depth analysis of their surroundings, social values, relationships, and performances, viewed in relation to each other. In The Strange Case it is a matter of professionalism, while in Dorian Gray it is a matter of influence. The third chapter is focused on a comparison of the two texts, their features are likened to each other to further enlighten the question of evil and villainy. The final chapter and conclusion go on to raise larger moral questions and discuss the struggle between good and evil in a more general sense. The findings of this thesis ended up raising a question of morality of the readers of the two novels in question. In addition to discovering the powerful influence social conventions have on the main characters' behavior, the terror of finding that evil exists in so many unexpected places also permeate the findings of the thesis. It rather ends on a more philosophical than analytical note, contemplating the human condition and human nature.
PublisherUniversitetet i Tromsø
University of Tromsø
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