From psychopathology to diabolical evil: Dr Jekyll, Mr Hyde and Jean Renoir
Abstract:Robert Louis Stevenson's Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde can be regarded as a reflection on the nature of evil seen through the lens of late-nineteenth-century medical discourse. When Jean Renoir made his film version of Stevenson's story under the title Le Testament du docteur Cordelier (1959), the context had changed radically. After the traumas of European Fascism and the Second World War, Renoir's film re-fashions the story of Jekyll and Hyde for a post-Holocaust audience. It eschews psychopathology and explains evil as the free choice of a rational subject who is disturbingly in tune with the contemporary world.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: March 1, 2012
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- Journal of Romance Studies promotes innovative critical work in the areas of linguistics, literature, performing and visual arts, media, material culture, intellectual and cultural history, critical and cultural theory, psychoanalysis, gender studies, social sciences, and anthropology. The primary focus is on those parts of the world that speak, or have spoken, French, Italian, Spanish or Portuguese, but work on other cultures may be included. Issues cross national and disciplinary boundaries in order to stimulate new ways of thinking about cultural history and practice.
Published in Association with the Institute of Germanic & Romance Studies, School of Advanced Study, University of London.
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