Thursday, June 28, 2012

Arthur Conan Doyle's Women

We interrupt the scheduled broadcast of 'Justin Bieber: This Is My World' to bring you this important fan-rave.

Reading Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories has been a revelation in more ways than one. Especially how he depicts his women. So much is made of Irene Adler - 'The' Woman featured in 'A Scandal in Bohemia' - but there are many female characters across other stories, who (whom? - I never know) Holmes respects not just for their 'sensible' nature but also for their brand of instinct and logic. Holmes recognises feminine values and, driven by reason as he is, finds no need to dismiss them like others do unless given due cause.  His women are neither idealized archetypes nor irrelevant pieces of furniture. They're interesting, multi-layered with things to do in the story.

As one reads these stories, one is suddenly - and sadly - aware of how rare this attitude would've been in the 19th century and how it continues to be fairly uncommon in today's world as well.

(Also 1000 extra points for his views on race relations and class distinctions in 19th century England.) 

This Bieber documentary is delightful. I can imagine it being made by someone like this.


  1. Quite strange, really. We just finished watching Part 2 - the Sherlock Holmes film, 'Game of Shadows'. Just means, just this very instant, and I find this post from you. :)

    1. Spooky indeed. I haven't seen Game of Shadows (I must, soon!)...mostly addicted to the books and the BBC series.

  2. I once committed the mistake of trying to explain to the son the correct usage of who and whom. the upshot of this is that he insists on refering to a section in his English paper called "who said to whom" as "whom said to who"

  3. So which is which? Too much suspense! :D