Conan Doyle: Writing, Profession, and Practice

Paperback | May 27, 2015

byDouglas Kerr

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From the early stories, to the great popular triumphs of the Sherlock Holmes tales and the Professor Challenger adventures, the ambitious historical fiction, the campaigns against injustice, and the Spiritualist writings of his later years, Conan Doyle produced a wealth of narratives. He had aworldwide reputation and was one of the most popular authors of the age. A critical study of the writings of Arthur Conan Doyle and a cultural biography, this is a book for students of literary and cultural history, and Conan Doyle enthusiasts. It is a full account of all of his writing, and an investigation of the role of the author as he practised it, as witness,critic, and interpreter of his times.His work was widely read and enjoyed, but it is far from being a simple endorsement of the masculine, imperialist, bourgeois, scientific world he so often portrayed.The subject of this study is what Conan Doyle knew - the knowledge of his own culture, its institutions and values and ways of life, its beliefs and anxieties, which is created and shared by his writing. The book is organized according to a number of cultural domains - sport, medicine, science, lawand order, army and empire, and the spiritual life. At a time when literature had become a profession, in a society where literacy was more widespread than ever before or since, Conan Doyle emerges as a maker of culture, offering his readers an image of themselves, their past and theirfuture.

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From the early stories, to the great popular triumphs of the Sherlock Holmes tales and the Professor Challenger adventures, the ambitious historical fiction, the campaigns against injustice, and the Spiritualist writings of his later years, Conan Doyle produced a wealth of narratives. He had aworldwide reputation and was one of the mos...

Douglas Kerr was born in Scotland, educated at Cambridge and Warwick universities, and is a Professor of English at the University of Hong Kong, where he has taught since 1979. He is the author of Wilfred Owen's Voices, George Orwell, and Eastern Figures: Orient and Empire in British Writing. He first encountered Arthur Conan Doyle at...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.63 inPublished:May 27, 2015Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198728077

ISBN - 13:9780198728078

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Table of Contents

1. INTRODUCTIONPracticeProfession2. SPORTSport and the nationThe straight leftA nation of amateurs3. MEDICINEThe statement of the caseThe consultantsIn general practiceThe cold detective4. SCIENCEThe curious adventure in BerlinMonsters and committeesThinking like a scientist5. LAW AND ORDERCrimes and punishmentsEdalji's eyes6. ARMY AND EMPIRESoldier boysArmyEmpire7. SPIRITChurchSpiritualismFairiesThe new life

Editorial Reviews

"finely nuanced ... a complex study of a writer whose legacy remains striking and memorable, but never simple." --Christopher Metress, English Literature in Translation