EN 1006 Lecture Notes - Structural Level, Robert Louis Stevenson

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Published on 17 Apr 2013
School
York University
Department
English
Course
EN 1006
April 9th 2009
Stevenson’s Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
Urban Gothicism and the strange qualities of existence
Urban Gothicism
Structuring the madness within
Freud, the uncanny and the horrible double
Fear
Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894)
Writer of short stories, essays, travelogues
Treasure Island (1883)
“Shilling –shocker”, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1886)
Calvinistic upbringing: Preoccupation with predestination
Fascinated by evil
Urban Gothic
The close connection text foregrounds between architectural structure and psychological
experiences of characters
Isolation of individual in urban centre
Tales Structure
Focus on the horrifying within
Exploration of psychology of characters
Fragmented vignettes (short scene)
Emphasizing process of story-telling
Duplicity of narrative itself
Effects Produced by Tales Structure
Emphasis on story-telling
Enhances personal reactions = questions authority of narrating voices
Enhances suspense
Refuses closure
Theme of fragmentation introduced on thematic and structural level
Emphasis on isolation and alienation
The City as a character
We have the perspective of: Enfield, Dr. Lanien, Dr. Jekyll, Dr. Utterson, but we do not
get Mr. Hyde’s perspective
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Document Summary

Urban gothicism and the strange qualities of existence. Freud, the uncanny and the horrible double. Shilling shocker , dr. jekyll and mr. hyde (1886) The close connection text foregrounds between architectural structure and psychological experiences of characters. Enhances personal reactions = questions authority of narrating voices. Theme of fragmentation introduced on thematic and structural level. We have the perspective of: enfield, dr. lanien, dr. jekyll, dr. utterson, but we do not get mr. hyde"s perspective. By means of this narrative structure, he calls attention to process of storytelling. All of these vignettes call attention to the story that is happening around it. The last narrative kind of refuses closure (from mr. hyde) Devices serve to propel narrative, also represent narratives drive towards coherence. Dr. jekyll does many experiments on himself, and we go through it with him. Seems to be a world in which people (men especially)spend their time alone. Mr. utterson is the respectable victorian man.

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