Jekyll and Hyde – Setting


Setting is an integral part of the novel, reflecting both the duality of man and the battle between the light and dark aspects of human nature.

We whizzed through the prsentation today, which I know some of you were frustrated by – it’s simply too long to allow everyone to copy each slide. Here’s the PowerPoint, with page numbers for the ‘One Book -One Edinburgh’ editions. I’ll get the other page numbers for the Oxford editions up as soon as I can.

There is a task in this PowerPoint which mentions an essay – don’t panic, that won’t be for a couple of weeks yet.


The Great Gatsby – Chapter 6

So, in Chapter 6 we finally find out who ‘Jay Gatsby’ really is, as well as how different the tastes and manners of West and East Egg are.

Gatsby has spent years creating this version of himself, seemingly all for Daisy – so to what extent is his character as much a figment of his own imagination as he is ours, the reader?

Character Study

Who’s is Gatsby? By looking closely at the text, create a detailed character study of Gatsby.

Consider key scenes, quotations and his relationships with other characters. How much has he been influenced by the idea of the American dream, and has he achieved his? Is his dream even possible?

The Great Gatsby – LitCharts

Here’s the link to the Litcharts site for The Great Gatsby – it’s got handy chapter and character summaries, and there’s even an app you can download to access all this on your lovely phones.

Also, if you want to access an audiobook of the novel, try the Audible app (it’s free, but you’ll need to pay for the actual audiobook itself) or this link at YouTube:

Jekyll and Hyde – Chapters 1 and 2, Analysing Quotations

Some good work today, guys, just make sure you remember the 3 steps of analysis:

1. Break the sentence down – look at the meaning and connotations of individual words, techniques and phrases, as well as the whole sentence.

e.g ”…the man trampled calmly over the child’s body and left her screaming on the ground. It sounds nothing to hear, but it was hellish to see.”

“calmly” suggests Hyde had no compulsions over harming the child, and contrast between this and and “screaming” emphasises how callous he was.

“Hellish” not only tells us how awful a sight it was, but links Hyde’s actions to something evil, or “damned”.

2. Think about what the whole sentence suggests.

e.g. ”…the man trampled calmly over the child’s body and left her screaming on the ground. It sounds nothing to hear, but it was hellish to see.”

The sentence shows that there is no mercy in Hyde’s actions, as well as highlighting the brutality of what Lanyon has witnessed.

3. Comment on the context of the quotation.

e.g. ”…the man trampled calmly over the child’s body and left her screaming on the ground. It sounds nothing to hear, but it was hellish to see.”

Already we become aware of Hyde’s cruelty and vicious nature, even in harming an innocent child. This brutal incident foreshadows the violence and evil that Hyde continues to wreak throughout the novel.

HOMEWORK, DUE Wednesday 28/08/2013 – Read to the end of Chapter 5 ‘The Incident of the Letter’, and complete your analysis of your five quotes.

Close Reading Homework

Here’s your Close Reading homework booklet, which has seven articles with questions. I will be asking you to complete an article each week, to give you practice for your NAB.

Close reading doesn’t seem the most thrilling thing to do in the course, but it really helps you understand how to break down a text and demonstrate your understanding – things that will help you when studying texts, in exams, if you go on to college or uni, and in the workplace.

HOMEWORK, DUE Friday 30/08/2013 : Read and complete questions on Article 1.

Higher Int2-homework-booklet

The Great Gatsby – Themes in Chapters 1-3

  • Corruption of the American dream – we can see this in the symbolism of the valley of ashes – a derelict wasteland representing the poverty of those who have not reached their version of the ‘dream’ yet. The valley is barren and simply passed through by the wealthy of New York and Long Island, where Nick, Tom, Daisy and Gatsby live. We also see the corruption of this dream through the declining morality of our characters – they are unfaithful wives and husbands, concerned more with gossip and rumour than anything else, it seems.
  • Hope – the first chapters of the novel are tense in places – both Daisy and Tom as well as George and Myrtle exist in unhappy marriages. Yet the dog that Tom buys for Myrtle represents a hope of sorts for her – she cannot have a family with him, but she can have this for companionship. Her relationship with Tom also represents a glimpse and taste of a more glamorous world of opportunity, affording her new dresses and apartments in New York – far away from her barren existence with George in the valley of ashes.
  • Paradox – Nick experiences a paradox at Gatsby’s party – amongst all the wealth, extravagance and showmanship, he finds himself quite disgusted with the other guests, and the way they indulge in this frivolous life – he is revolted, and yet cannot bring himself to leave. He remains fascinated, as well as appalled.
  • Reality and Illusion – all our characters appear to be something different from what they are – Tom and Daisy appear to be rich, carefree and happy, but the open-secret of his affair the tension between them indicates that the reality of their marriage is crumbling. Myrtle is a working class woman, without money, and yet she changes her dresses (and personality) so often it highlights how much she wishes to be something else, condemning staff in the apartment block and acting the part of a far wealthier woman. Gatsby himself speaks in a way that is almost self-consciously formal – is he what he appears to be, or is he trying too hard, as the woman whose dress he replaced suspects?
  • Jealousy/possessiveness – Tom is certainly at the centre of much of this, seemingly very controlling over Daisy and Myrtle – his violent reaction to Myrtle’s taunting suggests that he is a man who likes to be in control, and is willing to do whatever he can to retain that authority. Myrtle herself is jealous of Tom and Daisy’s life – she thrives on the idea of money and social status, and the ways she taunts Tom with Daisy’s name tells us how much she is threatened by the ‘other woman’.

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde – Lesson 1

So, today we discussed the background to Robert Louis Stevenson’s novella, as well as looked at some of the modern influences this text has had, such as The Incredible Hulk.


  • Mr Utterson – a lawyer, and in charge of making Dr Jekyll’s will. He becomes suspicious of Hyde and his apparent influence over his friend, Jekyll.
  • Dr Henry Jekyll – a respected Doctor, who appears to be leaving all his possessions to the fairly dodgy Mr Hyde. He gradually becomes more and more withdrawn from his friends, secluded himself in his laboratory.
  • Mr Edward Hyde – a suspicious man, who was seen trampling a child in the street, and a maid claims to have seen him murder.
  • Dr Lanyon – a mutual friend of Jekyll and Utterson, who dies suddenly after discovering something truly disturbing about Jekyll. He leaves a letter for Utterson to be opened only after Jekyll’s death.


Context and Symbolism

  • One night, in 1885, Stevenson had a nightmare.
  • It was so intriguing he began writing what was to become The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. He finished the first draft in three days.
  • His wife, however, thought it was simply a scary story – she challenged him to go further, and look at the philosophical possibilities with an exploration of the darker side of human nature.


Rise of the working class

To some, Hyde represents the growing power of the social classes, who by now had been given the power to vote, and were becoming aware of readings by Karl Marx on the notion of equal wealth for all.


The 19th century brought with it a huge crisis in religion and faith, due to Darwin’s theory of evolution – the idea that religious teachings in Creation were untrue, and that man had evolved like other creatures.

Hyde represents the survival of the fittest, and as a natural man, he is unrestricted by social conventions and barriers in the same was Jekyll is.


Sigmund Freud, a Viennese doctor, had begun what would later become psychoanalysis, a method of analysing emotions and disorders. Freud believed we were influenced by impulses that we are not always aware of – the subconscious. Was Hyde Jekyll’s subconscious desire to delve into the darker side of his nature?