Among the many works offered during the course of this semester, a few stand out as exceptionally enjoyable and meaningful while some fail to meet this expectation. Thus, my favorite work this semester would be Robert Louis Stevenson’s “The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” while my least favorite is Stephen Crane’s “The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky. ” My first point of analysis when it comes to these works is the genre. This contributed greatly to my strong affection for Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
I enjoy the gothic, mystery genre, especially the technique in which several characters narrate the story. This diversity in point-of-view gives the reader, myself, various perspectives on which to evaluate the action. In addition to the genre and technique, I was enthralled by the story’s theme. The inner struggle of good and evil is something that is inherent in all people, and physically separating a person into a “good” half and a “bad” half is an excellent way to characterize this dichotomy.
I also enjoyed the culminating conclusion that the incarnation of evil can slowly overrun the inclinations towards good in a person. “The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky” is an example of a more objective style story written about the American west at the turn of the century. The theme of the story focuses on the end of the western gunslinger era for the more civilized behaviors of the East.
The self-consciousness of the bride is evident as she rides the train, but even the clothing of Yellow Sky’s only holdout, Scratchy Wilson, is a product of New York. The sadness of the loss of an era is evident, which, in turn, makes me sad. In addition, while both stories were of a serious nature, the seriousness in Bride is so much more unnecessary. The characters are oddly serious; it seemed way out of character as seen by the images of death and decay. I understand that this complements the theme, but I did not enjoy it as I did the mystery.