Professional Integrity in Peril at the Fin de Siècle

This essay positions the drug-using doctor at the intersection between traditional Gothic horror and a new fin-de-siècle medical realism, embedding the cultural anxieties at the fin de siècle in relation to the ethical and theological boundaries of scientific knowledge. The objective is to provide a framework for reading and interpreting the medico-gothic narrative of addiction. The essay examines the writings of three pioneering physician-scientists: one historical – Sigmund Freud – and two fictional – Dr Jekyll, in Robert Louis Stevenson‘s Strange Case of DrJekyll and Mr Hyde (1886), and Dr Seward in Bram Stoker‘s Dracula (1897).

Gothic Studies
Money, Commerce, Language, and the Horror of Modernity in ‘The Isle of Voices’

Money, not merely as subject in literature but also in its very form and function, exhibits qualities of spectral evanescence, fetishised power over the imagination, and the uncontrollable transgression of boundaries and limits, which closely parallel the concerns and anxieties of Gothic literature. Yet it is in the writings of economic theorists and commentators on market society like Adam Smith and Karl Marx that these Gothic anxieties about money are most clearly articulated. Stevensons short story ‘The Isle of Voices’, read in the context of his comments on money in his other writings, is one of the few fictional texts which uses these properties of money to create what might be called a ‘financial Gothic’ narrative, which nevertheless has insights and implications for the narratives of capitalist modernity in general.

Gothic Studies

). Such Gothic narratives debated what was meant by ‘nature’ and the ‘human’ by reworking the instability that characterised the prevailing notions of (masculine) subjectivity at the time. The precarious nature of this subjectivity is also related, in these Gothic texts (with, perhaps, the exception of Moreau ) to gender, biology, and desire. The analysis of Dracula and Jekyll and Hyde which

in Victorian demons
Suicide and the self in the fin-de-siècle Gothic

factors which give rise to them. Stevenson’s Jekyll and Hyde illustrates how models of personal dissipation are implicated within wider socio-political dramas which suggest that self-destruction is rooted within class-bound cultural forms (and not just enabled by the science of chemistry). Jekyll’s account of why he sought for a chemical liberation of an inner self is situated within the context of his past. He acknowledges the presence of ‘a certain gaiety of disposition, such as has made the happiness of many, but such as I found it hard to

in Suicide and the Gothic
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Robert Hamer after Ealing

them on both sides of the law. Throughout Hamer’s later films he explores the Jekyll-and-Hyde theme of a man pitted against his doppelgänger , a person whom he opposes but feels tempted to resemble. Often there’s a strong undertow of homo-eroticism to the relationship. Ledocq, handsome and dashing, uses women but keeps them at emotional arm’s length. The repressed Maubert, who lives alone, nagged by an

in British cinema of the 1950s
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democratic process sufficiently to allow the military to regain power. 2 Shame is thus a double satire on a pair of ‘conjoined opposites’ – the playboy and the puritan, the socialist democrat and the autocratic dictator – who are seen as two sides of the same coin: a Jekyll and Hyde of authoritarian politics. 3 In some respects this focus on Pakistani politics makes Shame a companion piece to Midnight’s Children : a ‘Pakistani’ fiction to complement the earlier ‘Indian’ fiction. The two novels, however, also differ significantly in form and

in Salman Rushdie
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relationship did exist between how the Gothic influenced a certain medical language (such as Treves’s) and how images of science influenced the Gothic (as in Jekyll and Hyde and Dracula ). In addition, as we saw in the press reports during the Whitechapel murders, the distinction between the literary and the scientific was somewhat blurred at the time; or at least it was in a certain kind of popular

in Victorian demons
Journalism, Gothic London and the medical gaze

to be found in Stevenson’s Jekyll and Hyde , Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray (1891) and Stoker’s Dracula (1897). Such doubling was also reflected in media speculation concerning the very different class attributes of the murderer, a bourgeois doctor or the cockney Jack, which played on Stevenson’s class tensions in Jekyll and Hyde. However, what is also a key area in these

in Victorian demons
Thomas Edison’s Frankenstein and John Barrymore’s Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde

. Early screen adaptations of the novel make extensive use of dissolves and rapid edits. The nature of film technology, even in its earliest days, facilitated this. Indeed, in the case of the Thanhouser Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1911), S. A. Nollen reveals that editing was used so that two actors (James Cruze and Harry Benham) took the respective roles of Jekyll and Hyde (Nollen, 1994 : 168). With John

in Monstrous adaptations
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unstable, divided self which is echoed in the Gothic instabilities of the seemingly bifurcated subject suggested in Jekyll and Hyde. Hendershot claims that ‘One area that has served a crucial site for defining modern masculinity has been science. As the Gothic troubles stable notions of the body, so it invades the objective discourse of science’ (p. 69). Science and the representation of science in the

in Victorian demons