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The Final Problem

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  • Arnie Perlstein
    Mr Molesack: I must be honest, I ve never seen Doyle as the sort of author who would indulge in those sorts of games. The sorts of things that make it look as
    Message 1 of 25 , Feb 1, 2012
      Mr Molesack: "I must be honest, I've never seen Doyle as the sort of
      author who would indulge in those sorts of games. The sorts of things
      that make it look as if he is (Watson never sees Moriarty in person, for
      example) can be explained away as a side effect of the way that he is
      telling the story. Keeping Moriarty away from Watson (and in effect, the
      reader) allows him to become an infinitely menacing figure. It is rather
      like the way that the ghosts in THE HAUNTING or THE INNOCENTS are
      suggested rather than clearly shown. What you don't see is always scarier."

      That the treatment of Moriarty in The Final Problem is susceptible to
      the kind of non-subtextual analysis you've made, Mr. M, does not mean
      that Doyle did not _also_ indulge in those sorts of games, as you put
      it. What I have found in my analysis of what i call "shadow stories" in
      the fictions of many great writers (Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Dickens,
      and a number of others) is that these writers take great pains to
      provide plausible "cover stories" for the kind of "smoke" that has led
      several different readers of The Last Problem to speculate about
      Moriarty as Holmes's 'imaginary enemy' (a nice reversal of the more
      typical imaginary _friends_ who tend to pop up in fiction!).

      My experience in literary sleuthing has taught me that each writer is a
      different case, and one must look at the totality of the evidence in
      order to assess whether a given writer is one who might be writing
      "shadow stories".

      I acknowledge to you that Doyle is not a writer who does a lot of
      "winking" in that direction, whereas Jane Austen (my primary field of
      expertise in regard to shadow stories, along with Shakespeare) winks and
      hints all the time, which has been noticed by many Austen scholars.

      But...I must also tell you that i recently became aware of some very
      strong evidence that there is much more going on beneath the surface of
      The Final Problem in terms of covert allusions by Doyle to prior
      literary works, which strongly reinforce the notion of Moriarty as not
      being real, in what I would call the "shadow story" (or alternative
      story) of The Final Problem.

      More on that when I am ready to publish my findings in that regard.

      Cheers, ARNIE
      sharpelvessociety.blogspot.com
      @JaneAustenCode on Twitter
    • L. J. Hurst
      Arnie Perlstein mentions allusions in Doyle s works. The most explicit was the basis of my discussion of Doyle s work, which I examined here:
      Message 2 of 25 , Feb 1, 2012
        Arnie Perlstein mentions allusions in Doyle's works. The most explicit was the basis of my
        discussion of Doyle's work, which I examined here: http://ds.dial.pipex.com/l.j.hurst/holmes3.htm

        Regards,

        L


        Quoting Arnie Perlstein <arnieperlstein@...>:

        > Mr Molesack: "I must be honest, I've never seen Doyle as the sort of
        > author who would indulge in those sorts of games. The sorts of things
        > that make it look as if he is (Watson never sees Moriarty in person, for
        > example) can be explained away as a side effect of the way that he is
        > telling the story. Keeping Moriarty away from Watson (and in effect, the
        > reader) allows him to become an infinitely menacing figure. It is rather
        > like the way that the ghosts in THE HAUNTING or THE INNOCENTS are
        > suggested rather than clearly shown. What you don't see is always scarier."
        >
        > That the treatment of Moriarty in The Final Problem is susceptible to
        > the kind of non-subtextual analysis you've made, Mr. M, does not mean
        > that Doyle did not _also_ indulge in those sorts of games, as you put
        > it. What I have found in my analysis of what i call "shadow stories" in
        > the fictions of many great writers (Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Dickens,
        > and a number of others) is that these writers take great pains to
        > provide plausible "cover stories" for the kind of "smoke" that has led
        > several different readers of The Last Problem to speculate about
        > Moriarty as Holmes's 'imaginary enemy' (a nice reversal of the more
        > typical imaginary _friends_ who tend to pop up in fiction!).
        >
        > My experience in literary sleuthing has taught me that each writer is a
        > different case, and one must look at the totality of the evidence in
        > order to assess whether a given writer is one who might be writing
        > "shadow stories".
        >
        > I acknowledge to you that Doyle is not a writer who does a lot of
        > "winking" in that direction, whereas Jane Austen (my primary field of
        > expertise in regard to shadow stories, along with Shakespeare) winks and
        > hints all the time, which has been noticed by many Austen scholars.
        >
        > But...I must also tell you that i recently became aware of some very
        > strong evidence that there is much more going on beneath the surface of
        > The Final Problem in terms of covert allusions by Doyle to prior
        > literary works, which strongly reinforce the notion of Moriarty as not
        > being real, in what I would call the "shadow story" (or alternative
        > story) of The Final Problem.
        >
        > More on that when I am ready to publish my findings in that regard.
        >
        > Cheers, ARNIE
        > sharpelvessociety.blogspot.com
        > @JaneAustenCode on Twitter
        >
        >
        >
        >


        --
      • Arnie Perlstein
        L Hurst wrote: Arnie Perlstein mentions allusions in Doyle s works. The most explicit was the basis of my discussion of Doyle s work.... L, thanks for your
        Message 3 of 25 , Feb 1, 2012
          L Hurst wrote: "Arnie Perlstein mentions allusions in Doyle's works.
          The most explicit was the basis of my discussion of Doyle's work...."

          L, thanks for your reply, I just read your article, and I want to be
          sure I have caught your meaning--is the explicit allusion you refer to,
          above, the following?"

          "When Dr Watson reported the death of Sherlock Holmes in Arthur Conan
          Doyle's 'The Final Problem' (December 1893), he ended by talking of:
          '/him whom I shall ever regard as the best and the wisest man whom I
          have ever known' / echoing another report written long before: '/Such
          was the end, Echecrates, of our friend, whom I may truly call the
          wisest, and justest, and best of all men whom I have ever known'/ in
          _Phaedo_, Plato's account of the death of Socrates in 399 BC. In a new
          medium of publication, a new genre of literature and a new style of
          writing Doyle was asserting a continuity with an ancient higher
          tradition, almost the opposite of the populist means he was using. Yet
          this was not a literary tradition."

          I was very much aware of that allusion, but that's only the first door
          that opens into the ante room of this story, there's much more going on
          than that, allusively, in The Final Problem--more doors to walk
          through..... ;)

          Cheers, ARNIE
          sharpelvessociety.blogspot.com
          @JaneAustenCode on Twitter
        • L. J. Hurst
          Arne, I limited myself to Doyle and philosophy, so I d fascinated to have other doors opened for me, as you are promising to do. ... --
          Message 4 of 25 , Feb 1, 2012
            Arne, I limited myself to Doyle and philosophy, so I'd fascinated to have other doors opened for
            me, as you are promising to do.


            Quoting Arnie Perlstein <arnieperlstein@...>:

            > L Hurst wrote: "Arnie Perlstein mentions allusions in Doyle's works.
            > The most explicit was the basis of my discussion of Doyle's work...."
            >
            > L, thanks for your reply, I just read your article, and I want to be
            > sure I have caught your meaning--is the explicit allusion you refer to,
            > above, the following?"
            >
            > "When Dr Watson reported the death of Sherlock Holmes in Arthur Conan
            > Doyle's 'The Final Problem' (December 1893), he ended by talking of:
            > '/him whom I shall ever regard as the best and the wisest man whom I
            > have ever known' / echoing another report written long before: '/Such
            > was the end, Echecrates, of our friend, whom I may truly call the
            > wisest, and justest, and best of all men whom I have ever known'/ in
            > _Phaedo_, Plato's account of the death of Socrates in 399 BC. In a new
            > medium of publication, a new genre of literature and a new style of
            > writing Doyle was asserting a continuity with an ancient higher
            > tradition, almost the opposite of the populist means he was using. Yet
            > this was not a literary tradition."
            >
            > I was very much aware of that allusion, but that's only the first door
            > that opens into the ante room of this story, there's much more going on
            > than that, allusively, in The Final Problem--more doors to walk
            > through..... ;)
            >
            > Cheers, ARNIE
            > sharpelvessociety.blogspot.com
            > @JaneAustenCode on Twitter
            >


            --
          • Arnie Perlstein
            ... Thank you, sir or madam , I wil endeavor not to disappoint! Cheers, ARNIE
            Message 5 of 25 , Feb 1, 2012
              On 2/1/2012 10:11 AM, L. J. Hurst wrote:
              >
              >
              > Arne, I limited myself to Doyle and philosophy, so I'd fascinated to
              > have other doors opened for me, as you are promising to do.
              >
              >

              Thank you, sir or madam , I wil endeavor not to disappoint!

              Cheers, ARNIE
              >
              >
            • Xavier Lechard
              Some words on television s most famous police lieutenant: http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/02/good-lieutenant.html Friendly, Xavier
              Message 6 of 25 , Feb 5, 2012
                Some words on television's most famous police lieutenant:

                http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/02/good-lieutenant.html

                Friendly,
                Xavier
              • Xavier Lechard
                In which we learn that Eliot just loved detective stories (product placement for CADS inside)
                Message 7 of 25 , Feb 6, 2012
                  In which we learn that Eliot just loved detective stories (product
                  placement for CADS inside)

                  http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/02/eliot-in-murderland.html

                  Friendly,
                  Xavier
                • Last Century Detective
                  I also posted this link as a comment, on Xavier s blog, but will post it here, as well, for the benefit of the members of this group. Vincent Price on T.S.
                  Message 8 of 25 , Feb 6, 2012
                    I also posted this link as a comment, on Xavier's blog, but will post it here, as well, for the benefit of the members of this group.

                    Vincent Price on T.S. Eliot and his admiration of Sherlock Holmes:

                    <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XkTy1bLTUrM&feature=player_detailpage#t=111s>

                    --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, Xavier Lechard <lechardxavier@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > In which we learn that Eliot just loved detective stories (product
                    > placement for CADS inside)
                    >
                    > http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/02/eliot-in-murderland.html
                    >
                    > Friendly,
                    > Xavier
                    >
                  • Vegetableduck
                    Great pic of Eliot and title! Cleverer than mine. Thanks for the mention. Eliot is much more sensible than some other critics of crime fiction, I think.
                    Message 9 of 25 , Feb 6, 2012
                      Great pic of Eliot and title! Cleverer than mine. Thanks for the mention. Eliot is much more sensible than some other critics of crime fiction, I think.

                      Curt

                      --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, Xavier Lechard <lechardxavier@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > In which we learn that Eliot just loved detective stories (product
                      > placement for CADS inside)
                      >
                      > http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/02/eliot-in-murderland.html
                      >
                      > Friendly,
                      > Xavier
                      >
                    • miketooney49
                      Erga omnes: Does anyone know the title(s) of the particular work(s) by Eliot in which he expressed his opinions of detective fiction?
                      Message 10 of 25 , Feb 7, 2012
                        Erga omnes:

                        Does anyone know the title(s) of the particular
                        work(s) by Eliot in which he expressed his
                        opinions of detective fiction?

                        ==================================

                        --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, Xavier Lechard <lechardxavier@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > In which we learn that Eliot just loved detective stories (product
                        > placement for CADS inside)
                        >
                        > http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/02/eliot-in-murderland.html
                        >
                        > Friendly,
                        > Xavier
                        >
                      • Vegetableduck
                        He expressed them in the pages of his journal, The Criterion. He also wrote separate essays on Wilkie Collins, the only things people usually mention. I was
                        Message 11 of 25 , Feb 7, 2012
                          He expressed them in the pages of his journal, The Criterion. He also wrote separate essays on Wilkie Collins, the only things people usually mention. I was fascinated that Collins made his own set of rules for detective fiction.

                          The whole article is available from CADS!

                          Curt

                          --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, "miketooney49" <miketooney49@...> wrote:
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Erga omnes:
                          >
                          > Does anyone know the title(s) of the particular
                          > work(s) by Eliot in which he expressed his
                          > opinions of detective fiction?
                          >
                          > ==================================
                          >
                          > --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, Xavier Lechard <lechardxavier@> wrote:
                          > >
                          > > In which we learn that Eliot just loved detective stories (product
                          > > placement for CADS inside)
                          > >
                          > > http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/02/eliot-in-murderland.html
                          > >
                          > > Friendly,
                          > > Xavier
                          > >
                          >
                        • Valerie
                          Where can I find Wilkie Collins rules for detective fiction? Thanks. Valerie Zwirn
                          Message 12 of 25 , Feb 13, 2012
                            Where can I find Wilkie Collins' rules for detective fiction? Thanks.

                            Valerie Zwirn

                            --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, "Vegetableduck" <praed_street@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > He expressed them in the pages of his journal, The Criterion. He also wrote separate essays on Wilkie Collins, the only things people usually mention. I was fascinated that Collins made his own set of rules for detective fiction.
                            >
                            > The whole article is available from CADS!
                            >
                            > Curt
                            >
                            > --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, "miketooney49" <miketooney49@> wrote:
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > > Erga omnes:
                            > >
                            > > Does anyone know the title(s) of the particular
                            > > work(s) by Eliot in which he expressed his
                            > > opinions of detective fiction?
                            > >
                            > > ==================================
                            > >
                            > > --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, Xavier Lechard <lechardxavier@> wrote:
                            > > >
                            > > > In which we learn that Eliot just loved detective stories (product
                            > > > placement for CADS inside)
                            > > >
                            > > > http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/02/eliot-in-murderland.html
                            > > >
                            > > > Friendly,
                            > > > Xavier
                            > > >
                            > >
                            >
                          • Vegetableduck
                            Valerie,a slip of the keyboard--that should be Eliot, not Collins! Curt
                            Message 13 of 25 , Feb 13, 2012
                              Valerie,a slip of the keyboard--that should be Eliot, not Collins!

                              Curt

                              --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, "Valerie" <zwirnvalerie1@...> wrote:
                              >
                              > Where can I find Wilkie Collins' rules for detective fiction? Thanks.
                              >
                              > Valerie Zwirn
                              >
                              > --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, "Vegetableduck" <praed_street@> wrote:
                              > >
                              > > He expressed them in the pages of his journal, The Criterion. He also wrote separate essays on Wilkie Collins, the only things people usually mention. I was fascinated that Collins made his own set of rules for detective fiction.
                              > >
                              > > The whole article is available from CADS!
                              > >
                              > > Curt
                              > >
                              > > --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, "miketooney49" <miketooney49@> wrote:
                              > > >
                              > > >
                              > > >
                              > > > Erga omnes:
                              > > >
                              > > > Does anyone know the title(s) of the particular
                              > > > work(s) by Eliot in which he expressed his
                              > > > opinions of detective fiction?
                              > > >
                              > > > ==================================
                              > > >
                              > > > --- In GAdetection@yahoogroups.com, Xavier Lechard <lechardxavier@> wrote:
                              > > > >
                              > > > > In which we learn that Eliot just loved detective stories (product
                              > > > > placement for CADS inside)
                              > > > >
                              > > > > http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/02/eliot-in-murderland.html
                              > > > >
                              > > > > Friendly,
                              > > > > Xavier
                              > > > >
                              > > >
                              > >
                              >
                            • Xavier Lechard
                              Can t believe I m actually praising Julian Symons... Must be old age. http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/03/in-praise-of-julian-symons.html Friendly,
                              Message 14 of 25 , Mar 2, 2012
                                Can't believe I'm actually praising Julian Symons... Must be old age.

                                http://atthevillarose.blogspot.com/2012/03/in-praise-of-julian-symons.html

                                Friendly,
                                Xavier

                                >


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