The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

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How does Stevenson create a balance of realism and the supernatural in The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde?

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Stevenson keeps the supernatural relatively subdued in The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. For the first part of the novel, the reader has no inkling of the supernatural at all. Mr. Hyde simply seems to be a monstrous, sadistic man blackmailing Jekyll into protecting him from the law.

By the time the reader learns about the true relationship between Jekyll and Hyde, the supernatural creeps into the story. The brew Jekyll uses to separate his evil self from his usual self is technically presented as science-fiction rather than supernatural fantasy since Jekyll is a scientist; however, its vague descriptions and the way Jekyll uses it to become a monster lend it more than an inkling of the supernatural.

It would have been easy for the story to lose its realistic feel in the light of these developments, but keeping Lanyon as the narrator aids Stevenson here. Lanyon is rational and cool, even when crazy things happen, so he takes the explanation of Jekyll's transformation in stride....

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