Dualism in the "Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" by Robert Stevenson

Essay, 2022

14 Pages, Grade: 85


Chapter one

1.1. Introduction

In this chapter the research will cover the background of the study, reasons for choosing the topic, the questions of the study, aims of the study, significance of the study.

1.2. The background of the study

A literary work can be known as a branch of literature, as a true reflection of the events that take place around the writer dealing with phrases and sentences to express ideas, actions and human deeds the literature as a human activity deal with such kinds of human aims to create a human record and document life stages. Literary works helped to give the readers morals, social, education, or cultural values. The literary work can be an imaginative world containing the main branches such as drama, novels short stories, or poetry. Each branch played an important role to discover human deeds and understand human nature. Most literary works especially novels are influenced by the author’s life, social classes and social discriminations, historical events, or the author’s ideology and what he believed in. Some novels have been focused on the internal overlapping of characters more than the external overlapping between characters and tracing the relationships among them. Internal overlapping is something that exists inside the character. Deals with internal individual differences as parts of the conflict in other words a bunch of personalities struggle among them to be on the surface of the human and control him. This kind of conflict will be more dangerous to humankind than humankind himself. In general, anyone has trouble with that kind of internal overlapping being confused with a decision which they have to make in some cases or issues; hence they have two different personalities (Multiple Personality Disorder) which that means they might be a good or evil person in certain time due to the early exposure of the social environment which they are lived in, a conflict takes a hard shape to see or feel at the early stages. Multiple personality disorder can be mentioned as" a disorder of attachment" (Barach, 1998: p,117). Multiple personality disorder is a case in which a person's identity is divided into two or more distinct parts states. People with this special case are sometimes victims of hard abuse. Multiple personality disorder reflected someone who cannot control their identity, memory, actions, and awareness in facing a single multidimensional self. A primary identity carries the individual's given name and is passive, dependent guilty, and feeling badly depressed. When in control, each personality state will be clear to do experience as if it has distinct features, self-image and identity. While, other characteristics containing name, age and gender, vocabulary, general appearance, and self-mood will be in contrast with those of the primary identity social circumstances which have stress can cause a particular alter to emerge. The various personality may not accept the real knowledge of one another, be critical of one another or appear to be in open overlapping and unlimited. A person with multiple personalities can be identified through: -"First, He will have a problem with cognition and a continuous loss of memory. Second: - It is not possible to identify him with a fixed identity, as his identity will change according to the time and place in which he will be. The third: He will suffer from a state of denial of his self-history, weakness in social interaction, and a lack of social performance. In the end, the multiplicity of personalities will lead him to suicide." (Ramana,2020, p,1). The issue of suicide is not familiar to normal human beings, but it is present and frequently in people who suffer from multiple personality disorders. The attempt of each character to overcome the other will lead to a state of infighting between them in the end, one of these characters will triumph, but it will lead to the killing of the host body and be a case of suicide. According to a report made by WHO “Almost 1 million lives are lost to society yearly; these translate to 3000 suicide deaths daily." (WHO, 2012). When readers read a novel that is based on the internal conflict of character, they will use psychoanalytic theory to reach a good level of understanding of the story. This type of novel usually talked about the character that confused him, In the target novel entitled The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, readers will understand that the main character is affected with multiple personality disorder. At the first, he can be Dr Jekyll who is intelligent and nice, or he can be Mr. Hyde who has a harsh soul. This happened because he does not feel comfortable with his life and then tries to get another personality by drinking the potion that he made with his hand. That potion helped him to change from Dr Jekyll to be Mr. Hyde, at the beginning he was able to control him by having the cure that he made already, but after a while, he lost that control after realizing that Mr. Hyde was out of control and he can abusing the others, Dr Jekyll tried to make another potion to get rid of him and stop him but he failed to do that, it was too late now. Even he tried to commit suicide in an attempt to take off Mr. Hyde and at the end of the novel he died in the shape of Mr. Hyde. As mentioned early the novel has been influenced by the author's ideology, social class, and social situation that mean out there in real life there are many people who are suffering from dualism and multiple personalities.

1.3. Reasons for choosing the topic

Many reasons can stand beyond choosing this novel to study the dualism from a psychological perspective and exploring it as a psycho factor widely separate from us in our real life. Reading this novel will support people understand the multiple personality disorder hence it gives the moral lesson, moral values, and lofty ideas. It helps to discover the dark side of human personality because it will help them to pay more attention to and care for multiple personality disorder and dualism because it may put them in great danger. Secondly, this novel mentioned that multiple personality disorders can be devastating either physically or psychologically to anyone. Besides that, this novel gives the joy able and fun to read, it is interesting helps to discover the imaginative shape of the society in those days and how people were lived.

1.4. Research Questions

The researcher wants to limit the discussion of the research by focusing on these questions and problems, trying to trace the boundaries of the research

(1) How does the multiple personality disorder influence the main character as it is described within the novel?
(2) How does the main character deal with multiple personality disorders as mentioned within the novel?
(3) What are the advantages and disadvantages of the multiple personality disorder, and how it be a basic challenge in the main character's life?

1.5. Aims of the research

The research aims to discuss the objective of the topic, by describing how the main character gets the multiple personality disorder as is shown within the novel. The main character has suffered from the psychological factor of how they faced it and deals with it. Also, in the final phase how the main character does try to get rid of it? On the other hand, how the disorder impacts the character's life?

1.6. The significance of the research

The internal conflict as reflected within the novel (The strange case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde) and analyzing the main character, will help to expand the knowledge about the disorder and dualism as psychological concepts, and how these concepts take place in the literary work and give the main theme a psychological perspective by focusing on the events in the real life. Related to the main aim of this research, there are some expectations to be shared with the readers, at the tip of the top the results of this research could be a reference for developing literary work. On the other hand, the results will be more helpful to understand the moral and social values within the novel and reach a better understanding of solving the internal conflict problems.

Chapter two

2.1. Review of the related studies

This chapter presents the studies related to the topics that have been done before and the theories used in this research. It is being presented on the review of previous studies, review of theoretical studies, and theoretical framework of the study.

Related references, the researcher used some of the previous studies by using four journals that have the same interest in the topic of this research.

The first one is written by Elmira Molaii (2015) entitled The Divergent Pat Within and Without a Psychoanalytic, Neo-Marxist Study of Jekyll and Hyde. It was concerning about the dualism concept and what happed with the main character of the novel, it dealt with the cause of dualism characteristics of Dr Jekyll as a serious trauma based mainly on the paucity of balance and harmony between the two characters in one, and by applying the theories of Sigmund Freud, Jacque Lacan and Louis Althusser based on psychological and ideological consequences argue that Hyde is forming the revolutionary side of the self against the other. In conclusion, there are two points of view, the first belongs to psychology and social logic, and the second belongs to psychodynamics. In an attempt to get rid of Mr. Hyde, he committed suicide, and here the research concludes that the conflict is based on two foundations, the first is the conflict between the self and itself, and the second is the conflict between the self and society.

The second one is written by Shubh M. Singh and Subho Chakrabarti entitled a study in dualism: The strange case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. It is an article that sought to state the concept of dualism from a philosophical perspective and discussed the religious framework also it tried to apply Freud's structural theory of the mind. Dualism can be understood as a fact that helps to discover the human personality in general; it is an attempt to explain the dark side, good and evil in humans due to the social and stress exposure and the existence of two different personalities one of them can be clear and the other one might be hidden. The article aims to state two different systems for dualism and understand their point of view of them and tried to ask multiple questions the first one how does the philosophy can express the dualism and under what kind of circumstances and the second question is related to the how the religion can state the good and evil which they are derived from the same point.

The third one is written by Nicola Lacey entitled Psychological Jekyll, Demonizing Hyde: The Strange Case of Criminal Responsibility. This article is very unique because it states this famous novel in an analytical framework, seeking to discover the life patterns of society in the nineteenth century, as it preserved the value coefficient for understanding the personality axes so as not to depart or stray from the general literary framework of the novel. As it considered that the character of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde are real people living in the real world, and on the other hand, he tried to explain to the reader how society would view them if they were completely real.

The fourth one is written by Lauren McDonald under the title Duality in Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, and "Dionne" She assumed that the duality in Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde can be so clear as a reflection of Stevenson’s own double life. She also quoted Rosen's field statement that the confession at the end of Jekyll and Hyde is Stevenson’s own. She thinks that Stevenson is confessing that he is a criminal in the same position as Jekyll “and that we, as second selves, unconsciously share his guilt” (Rosen field, 311). This novel can be typical for readers to discover the double life just as Stevenson's and his characters had. This article stated that dualism and personality issues were very prominent themes in late Victorian literature. Even it stated the social class of Dr Jekyll within the novel and expresses his social discrimination.


Excerpt out of 14 pages


Dualism in the "Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" by Robert Stevenson
Catalog Number
ISBN (Book)
dualism, strange, case, jekyll, hyde, robert, stevenson
Quote paper
Layth Jabbar (Author), 2022, Dualism in the "Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" by Robert Stevenson, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/1234604


  • No comments yet.
Read the ebook
Title: Dualism in the "Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" by Robert Stevenson

Upload papers

Your term paper / thesis:

- Publication as eBook and book
- High royalties for the sales
- Completely free - with ISBN
- It only takes five minutes
- Every paper finds readers

Publish now - it's free