The Battle between Good and Evil in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, a Novel by Robert Louis Stevenson

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Good; the Eternal Victor

A never ending opposition, good vs. evil, but ultimately, which is stronger? In Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, by Robert Luis Stevenson, this opposition is played out in the dual personality of Dr. Jekyll. Jekyll's good is represented by Jekyll, and the evil within him represented by his second personality, Mr. Hyde. This struggle between the forces of good and evil are also evident in the daily events in the world around us; the good of random Samaritans doing positive deeds for others, or horrific events such as the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. Though both the forces of good and evil are strong and evident in our lives, good is continuously able to outweigh and outshine the bad in any given situation, and is therefore undeniably stronger.

This Holiday season in a Livermore Wal-Mart, while families scraped together what they could to buy gifts for their children and relatives, what many would consider a miracle, occurred. Journalist Jeremy Thomas, who covered the story wrote, "There were tears of joy at a Livermore Wal-Mart on Friday as an anonymous couple played Santa, surprising shoppers by paying for their Christmas gifts."(Thomas). While evil was weighing on many families this holiday season in the form of monetary issues, good brought these families to joyful tears, despite any evil they were facing at that time in their lives. Evil won a battle in terms of causing grief to thousands during this Christmas due to the economic hardships this country has been facing, but good won the war in regards to this economic hardship because it took the challenge of the evils these families were facing and handed them a Christmas miracle that they will certainly remember for the rest of their lives. This random act of kindness is a prime example of good overpowering evil, and prevailing as the stronger force. A cashier working at the time of

this "Christmas miracle" stated, "There are so many nice people out there, you just forget about that with all the bad stuff going on."(Thomas). This statement made by the cashier could not be any closer to the truth. Many who may consider evil to be the stronger force, think that way because the news and the papers are not reporting the millions and millions of good deeds and actions, they are reporting the 100 horrific deeds done. The fact that we see the negative things on the news, makes us more aware of them, and therefore underscores the power of good in our minds. This does not take away the fact that while 100 evil events are occurring, millions of good things are taking place which entirely offset the evil. These families that were facing issues involving money during the holiday season saw tons of news about the recession and the poverty creating a tough holiday season for many, the miracle that occurred in that Livermore Wal-Mart, never made it farther than local news.

An event that most certainly made national news, however, was the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, an event which was undoubtedly a force of evil. There were however, hundreds of good deeds following this horrific incident. Ann Curry began the 26 acts of kindness, in which people were to do 26 random good deeds to honor those who lost their lives in the shooting. An article written by an IB Times Staff Reporter said, "Twitter users are documenting their good deeds with the hash tag #26acts."(IB Times staff reporter). Twitter is a huge social media, and this hash tag has been posted by millions, imagine millions of people all committing 26 random acts of good. In comparison, the evil of the shooting is far outweighed by all of the positivity brought about by the powerful forces of good in the weeks following the tragedy. Kaye Steger, a twitter user involved in this "26 acts of kindness", tweeted "I can't help anyone

financially, but took my sweet dog to visit with my blind next-door neighbor,"(IB Times staff reporter). While evil forces made their best efforts to suppress these acts of kindness, good overpowered and people found ways around their personal obstacles in order to participate and to help others. This proves that even in the shadow of mass murder, and obstacles placed in our lives by evil, that good can, and will, find a way to overcome. It is nearly impossible for someone to look at the way that forces of good took this horrendous show of evil in our world, and made something positive of it, and still believe that evil truly has greater power than good in this world.

Not only in this world does good find a way to prevail amongst the evil, but also in the novella Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. "This, then, is the last time, short of a miracle, that Henry Jekyll can think his own thoughts and see his own face (now how sadly altered!) in the glass."(Stevenson 102). In this sentence Jekyll is speaking of his plans of suicide as means to rid the world of the evil that is Hyde. Jekyll's force of good battles Hyde's evil throughout the entire novella, and it looks as if the evil within him is far stronger than the good. When Jekyll see's that the evil has nearly overcome him, his forces of good are able to power through that evil in order to succeed. Although evil wins many battles, ultimately the forces of good prevail, and he is able to kill himself in good faith, to eliminate the forces of evil that he is all to aware of. The final victory for the forces of good comes when Jekyll writes; "And indeed the doom that is closing on us both has already changed and crushed him." (Stevenson 102). Jekyll can feel the the good crushing the evil within him. His decision to end the evil had already been made; the persistence of good overpowered the momentary sting of evil. While evil events and occurrences damage painfully, and deeply, it lasts for only a moment, because good always proceeds to surround the evil, and to "crush it" just as it did in the novella of Jekyll and Hyde.

The battle between the powers of good and evil is an eternal one, but good will forever get the better of evil. In the rough economic times this year, many families struggled, but positive actions, donations, and things like the anonymous Wal-Mart benefactors erase from our minds the evils which were present in that time. The Sandy Hook shooting, a heinous act of evil that affected many, was overtaken by the millions of acts of kindness, positivity, and the way the nation came together to cope with the situation, such as the 26 acts of kindness movement. Even in books, such as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, while evil is pressing down on Jekyll, the forces of good within him are able to battle it out, and ultimately succeed. No matter the battles lost, and the continual struggle, good will always find a way to prevail, no matter the circumstances, or the evils to overcome.

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The Battle between Good and Evil in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, a Novel by Robert Louis Stevenson. (2022, Dec 02). Retrieved June 15, 2024 , from

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