Biography: Robert Louis Stevenson

Robert Louis Stevenson was born on November 13 in 1850 in Scotland. Despite his lengthy education at Edinburgh, he always dreamed of being a writer. Soon he told his father that he would not be following in his footsteps to become an engineer. At the age of twenty-six he began to write for magazines and soon he was publishing his own books and articles. His first famous novel (Treasure Island) didn’t come until 1883 after he had married Fanny Osborne, an American. Eventually he moved to America for a time, before continuing on to Samoa. In Samoa he criticized Western domination of the islands and sided with the native Polynesians. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde was published in 1886 in attempts to raise money to support the family. Stevenson dreamt the plot and soon feverishly jotted his memories down on paper, finishing the short novel in three days. Unfortunately, Stevenson died suddenly, at the pinnacle of his writing career. Throughout his life he had suffered from a strange lung condition hampered by the cold, wet climates in which he lived. Despite his family’s relocation to Samoa after his father’s death, Stevenson soon passed away in 1894 at the age of forty-four. Stevenson will be best remembered not only for his children’s adventure novels but also for his repeating theme of the duality of human nature.