Sunday, December 5, 2010

Sherlock will save us all.

This Article is where it began, for me.

I've never read the Sherlock Holmes stories. It's been especially hard to ignore them at work. Shame floods over me every time Doyle and his creation are mentioned. I should read those! I should have read them, already! How did I miss this?!

My knowledge of Sherlock consists of what I've gleaned from the general media, studying other Victorian writers, Disney's The Great Mouse Detective, and the second half of that recent Sherlock Holmes movie starring Robert Downey Jr. That's not much, and not canon at all.

While I don't know much about Mr. Holmes, I do know a fair amount about the world and society in which he lived and died. Granted, it comes mostly from reading historical romance novels, but some of them are quite reputable! (See: Lauren Willig's Pink Carnation series.) It was a fascinating place and time quickly coming back into fashion. The increasing popularity of Victoriana is apparent in fashion, the rise of Steampunk (See: Off The Beaten Path Books, in Farmington.), a growing fear and distrust of modern and futuristic technologies, and nostalgia we feel for a time long before our own. Well, not so long...

Maybe our next craze won't be about wizards or werewolves or zombies or the Chinese. Maybe we'll look back on history, rather than buy into myths, superstitions and fear. Maybe we'll make shining examples of strong-willed, intelligent, independent thinkers who helped to shape a better world. Whether they be characters like Mr. Holmes or "real" (our perceptions of) people Queen Victoria bothers me not. ( I've also noticed an influx of books, new and reissued, about Victoria. Here, here, and here. You're welcome.)

So, I shall wait and see what happens. Maybe I'm not the only one realizing that we could be so much better, if only we tried. Until then, I'll do my part. Does anyone have a copy of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's works I could borrow?

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