The programme for this year’s Hong Kong International Literary Festival includes a talk by Professor Douglas Kerr entitled “Sherlock Holmes and the Spirits”.
In Sherlock Holmes, Arthur Conan Doyle invented one of the most successful characters in the history of literature. The world’s first consulting detective is brilliant, cerebral, and unemotional, a hero for a scientific age. His creator too was trained as a scientist, but as a writer he was romantic, intuitive, spontaneous. He responded generously to the world about him, often involving himself in struggles to redress injustice. At the same time he was a patriot and a strong believer in the British Empire. He wrote horror stories and science fiction – notably The Lost World – poetry, histories, and historical novels. Conan Doyle was enormously popular and respected as a writer. Yet by the time he died many thought of him as a gullible old fool, a man who travelled the world lecturing on Spiritualism, and believed in the authenticity of photographs of fairies cavorting on a riverbank in Yorkshire. Douglas Kerr, author of the recently-published Conan Doyle: Writing, Profession and Practice, unravels some of the paradoxes in the life and career of the most famous crime writer of them all.
Thursday 7th November, 8:30 to 9:30 pm, Underground, The Fringe Club, 2 Lower Albert Road, Central
The complete Literary Festival 2013 programme is here: http://www.festival.org.hk/.