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Special #8: Lyndsay’s Intro To Canon – Part IV

Special #8And we’re back with the fourth and sadly last of Lyndsay’s four classes on the Sherlock Holmes stories at the Center for Fiction in Manhattan. This time it’s full of lots of Adventures!

Enjoy!

SESSION 4: The Adventures

Readings:

—The Adventure of Charles Augustus Milverton
—The Adventure of the Six Napoleons
—The Adventure of the Abbey Grange
—The Adventure of Lady Frances Carfax
—The Adventure of the Devil’s Foot
—“Watson Falls Asleep; Narrative Frustration and Sherlock Holmes” by James Krasner

When Doyle committed himself to writing Sherlock Holmes stories once more, the general public greeted the news giddily.  While some of Doyle’s later cases borrow structurally from his earlier work, others are as fine and original as any from the pre-Reichenbach collections.  We’ll consider the function of anxiety in the canon, Krasner’s intriguing explication of the highly invested but ultimately frustrated narrator, and to what extent Dr. John Watson is the key to Holmes’s overwhelming worldwide popularity.  We’ll also chat about Doyle’s life and marriages and ways his passion for divorce reform influenced his writing (though he never did get on board with voting rights for women, more’s the pity), how Inspector G. Lestrade is awesome, why Holmes is the Worst Flatmate on Earth, and compare and contrast a brilliant Gothic horror tale with an absolutely terrible one.

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