Robert Louis Stevenson – Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1886)

INTRODUCTION:  What follows is the final chapter of Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, in which Henry Jekyll speaks for himself for the first time. The annotations focus on the precise relationship between Jekyll and Hyde, and they fall into two categories:

  1. Some of the annotations give relevant quotations from scholarly works on the function of the Doppelgänger in literature. The double or Doppelgänger (literally, German for “double-walker” or “double-goer”) appears in all sorts of literary texts throughout history but was a particular favorite of 19th-century writers. (Famous or infamous psychologist Sigmund Freud had a thing or two to say about the double as well. But that’s a topic for a different post.)
  2. Other annotations draw attention to sentences in the chapter that complicate the “Jekyll is good, Hyde is evil” conception of the story – a common but overly simplistic interpretation that does not fit with what Stevenson actually wrote.

ANNOTATED DOCUMENT:  Stevenson_Jekyll&Hyde

Annotations by:  Jessica Campbell

The annotated text is adapted from:  

Works cited & consulted in the annotations:  

  • Coates, Paul. The Double and the Other. St. Martin’s Press, 1988.
  • Dryden, Linda. The Modern Gothic and Literary Doubles: Stevenson, Wilde and Wells. Palgrave Macmillan, 2003.
  • Herdman, John. The Double in Nineteenth-Century Fiction: The Shadow Life. St. Martin’s Press, 1991.
  • Keppler, Carl. The Literature of the Second Self. University of Arizona Press, 1972.