An Analysis of Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

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In the classic detective story, this climactic chapter would contain the scene in which the detective, having solved the case, reveals his ingenious solution and fingers the culprit. Such a chapter is seen in other mystery stories such as Sherlock Holmes. But, in spite of Utterson's efforts in investigating the matter of Jekyll and Hyde, he has made no progress in solving the mystery. Indeed, were it not for the existence of Lanyon's letter and Jekyll's confession, which make up the last two chapters, it seems likely that the truth about Jekyll and Hyde never would be ascertained. Right in the middle there lay the body of a man sorely contorted and still twitching. They drew near on tiptoe, turned it on its back and beheld the face of Edward Hyde. He was dressed in clothes far to large for him, clothes of the doctor's bigness; the cords of his face still moved with a semblance of life, but life was quite gone: and by the crushed phial in the hand and the strong smell of kernels that hung upon the air, Utterson knew that he was looking on the body of a self-destroyer. "We have come too late," he said sternly, "whether to save or punish. Hyde is gone to his account; and it only remains for us to find the body of your master." (pgs. 44-45) I chose this passage because I feel it is one of the most important parts of the book because it is the closest Utterson comes to solving the case before actually reading the letters. The scene in which they find Hyde is very descriptive and detailed. It allows the reader to really enjoy the climax and pray that realization finally dawns on Utterson. However, Utterson cannot see the truth that is in front of him. One cannot blame Utterson for failing to solve the case of Jekyll and Hyde before reading the letters—even the most skilled professional detective could not have deduced the supernatural circumstances surrounding the doctor and his darker half. Nevertheless, Stevenson uses this chapter to emphasize just how far away...
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