Horror literature holds up a dark mirror to society, using monsters to illustrate social change, cultural shifts, and even scientific progress. In Classic Horror: A Historical Exploration of Literature
, author and English professor Anne DeLong explores four works of classic horror from the Victorian era—including Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner
(1798) and Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
(1818)—with background information, primary source documents, and analysis. This sample chapter
presents Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
(1886), analyzed within its original context of late 19th century England, where the conflict between a refined upper class society and a decaying, violent underclass was symbolized by Jekyll/Hyde’s dueling personalities. Click here to explore Classic Horror: A Historical Exploration of Literature.