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Thread: Literature Ramble

  1. #196
    The Gnu Normal Pompey Bum's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    Oh, sure, it was when he was already famous, but my intent was not to suggest those "cases" made him change the treatment of police, rather than ironically, he found his group of Lestrades when he changed this treatment. This probally shows how closer to the cops he eventually became, part of his status of course. Something just occured to me (i was zapping yesterday the channels waiting the next world cup game start and one channel had that Young Sherlock Holmes movie. Well, if the readers of Holmes became the teenager/young group, then the clumbsy police task also served as a "incompentent addults/parents" figures. A bit of lucky by Doyle, but certainly helped the indentification of his lasting audience.
    It's an interesting point. Coincidence, no doubt, considering Doyle's original readership, but yes, he was lucky in terms of his eventual audience. And in fact, there's plenty of appeal to teenagers in the stories. For one thing, the early Holmes is alienated from his social world and mostly expresses contempt for it. That's true of many teenagers. Holmes also usually gets things right where the authority figures (as you say, the Lestrades) get them wrong. And that's something most teenagers believe about themselves at least at times. Plus the early Holmes is a combination of eccentric and cool--a teenager who never grew up in a way. Maybe later teenagers were similar to late Victorian 20-something urban professionals. It would have been a natural progression as the bloody 20th century grew kids up quickly and brought and end to the relative innocence that some British had known just before.

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    I am sure there must be way more motives for the Irishmen became the good guys in the ned, the italians the bad guys (perhaps the whole Cosa Nostra thing was too heterodox/cultlike to be ever trusted, perhaps was the italian success) and I have no doubt, there was ethnical mobs everywhere there is any group settlements. Today for example, are the chinese and their cheap products. But I recall the irish good guy working out earlier (or later, I was thinking begining of XX century, you seem to be thinking a little before, so we are not even in the same time zone ), I mean, early hollywood movies already have the italian mobster image on, the irish cop (or good guy). I also recall plenty of irish descendents having sucess in Hollywood or irish seen in good light (heck, Scarlet O'Hara was irish).
    Yes, I'm thinking of the unprecedented waves of immigrants to American cities in the 19th century--for many Irish in the 1840s and 1850s. This precipitated a long legacy of discrimination, much of it from Protestants whose families had come earlier. My question is why the Irish (as opposed to the Italians, Poles, Czechs, Germans, Russians, etc.) contributed so heavily to the origins of urban police work. It would be interesting to see if the pre-immigrant Irish served a similar role in British-dominated Ireland. It got better in America but not wasn't from Protestant Americans' predisposition to love of the Irish--far from it. As far as Hollywood goes, that too was from a different era. Gone with the Wind wasn't even written until 1936, and Scarlet O'Hara was very much an anti-hero even then. And the time-honored stereotype of the Irish as a bunch of drunks and brawlers was doing just fine.

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    Perhaps Italy siding with the Axis helped to make them look badly, perhaps the identification with Catholic Church was worst, perhaps italians are just more sucessful, so they were just better enemies.
    You might be surprised. It was probably the opposite. One hell of a lot of Italian-American boys went to fight Mussolini--something everyone noticed at the time. If anything, it increased the respect other felt for them (that and baseball). But you're right about intra-Christian prejudices (Protestant against Catholic, Catholic against Protestant). Those troubles still go on in places.

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    Of course, Poe created this and he was american as you can get, but you americans have some kind of defense mechanism against Poe :P
    Guilty. Poe's too European. For me, American literature didn't really set sail until Ishmael and Queequeg hit the high seas. That's my opinion, though, and not my prejudice. But there is an American prejudice against Poe, and it has a preventable cause. Most Americans are given Poe to read in Middle School, which is way too early to understand what he's trying to do for literature. The rationale for this time-honored mistake is that Poe liked fantastical or morbid subjects that teenagers are bound to appreciate. Wrong. Let them read H.P. Lovecraft (or better yet, Arthur Conan Doyle) in Middle School and choose Poe for themselves in High School. Instead, Americans tend to think of Poe as kid stuff and not even fun kid stuff at that.

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    he just tell Watson how the crime (to get the treasure) was made, but he was just satified with the resolution. (I am recalling the dancing human figurines, but not sure if it was this one).
    The one with the stick figures was a post-resurrection story called The Dancing Men. It was about a mysterious coded message, but there was no jewel in it. The Blue Carbuncle had a jewel, but the plot was better than you describe (the thief hid the jewel by feeding it to a goose, which was accidentally switched with a Christmas goose). There was a lot of footwork in that one. It wasn't just Holmes explaining the solution to Watson. It's a old story.

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    The cape and mask yes. But underneath, Batman is an acrobat (Robin was one literaly).
    So was Zorro, since Batman's creators were really thinking about Errol Flynn pulling himself up and down moving trains with ropes. But okay, Batman's an acrobat.

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    And if you check well, despite some other influence, his villains seem to came from a circus show, a clown, a enimga trickster, some with big cats...
    Ah yes, Catwoman. The original Pussy Galore.

    Quote Originally Posted by JCamilo View Post
    Well, Gonçalves Dias died in his travel back from Portugal to here (he was sick, the ship sinked, everyone left, but they forgot him in his room) and the feeling is quite a national feeling for both portugal and brazil. So, the feeling is always there, but the poem may work as both chicken and egg.
    No, I meant which dies first first, the feeling of national belonging or knowledge/love of the poem. But probably their coming and going are both something like reverberating echoes. And where patriotic literature goes, I think things come and go in cycles--sometimes interrupted by events. Ah, but now I am rambling.
    And this from a man in a bunny suit.

  2. #197
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pompey Bum View Post
    It's an interesting point. Coincidence, no doubt, considering Doyle's original readership, but yes, he was lucky in terms of his eventual audience. And in fact, there's plenty of appeal to teenagers in the stories. For one thing, the early Holmes is alienated from his social world and mostly expresses contempt for it. That's true of many teenagers. Holmes also usually gets things right where the authority figures (as you say, the Lestrades) get them wrong. And that's something most teenagers believe about themselves at least at times. Plus the early Holmes is a combination of eccentric and cool--a teenager who never grew up in a way. Maybe later teenagers were similar to late Victorian 20-something urban professionals. It would have been a natural progression as the bloody 20th century grew kids up quickly and brought and end to the relative innocence that some British had known just before.
    Not to mention Holmes selected which subjects he would learn about and we never see him actually studying. He already knwos. A dream to teenagers in schools. Holmes was indeed the original Peter Pan.

    Yes, I'm thinking of the unprecedented waves of immigrants to American cities in the 19th century--for many Irish in the 1840s and 1850s. This precipitated a long legacy of discrimination, much of it from Protestants whose families had come earlier. My question is why the Irish (as opposed to the Italians, Poles, Czechs, Germans, Russians, etc.) contributed so heavily to the origins of urban police work. It would be interesting to see if the pre-immigrant Irish served a similar role in British-dominated Ireland. It got better in America but not wasn't from Protestant Americans' predisposition to love of the Irish--far from it. As far as Hollywood goes, that too was from a different era. Gone with the Wind wasn't even written until 1936, and Scarlet O'Hara was very much an anti-hero even then. And the time-honored stereotype of the Irish as a bunch of drunks and brawlers was doing just fine.
    I am not sure how well integrated the irish folk were in the british society. Someone probally know better than me, but the impression I got is that they were very strained, repressed and suffering a lot of troubles such as famine. I guess it was a fertile time for irish nationalism to be radical.

    Scarlet was indeed a "non-role model", but most of effect was enhaced because of her gender rather the nationality. I think her irish side was not very explored (perhaps you will tell me otherwise and claim it is an irish tradition to use curtains to make dresses )except the part of her "love" for the family farm. But that is more or less a imigrant thing, evoking the love for the homeland that will never be seen. Otherwise she seems to be quite american in her ways.


    You might be surprised. It was probably the opposite. One hell of a lot of Italian-American boys went to fight Mussolini--something everyone noticed at the time. If anything, it increased the respect other felt for them (that and baseball). But you're right about intra-Christian prejudices (Protestant against Catholic, Catholic against Protestant). Those troubles still go on in places.
    Yeah, this is always "welcome" since it means they adopted the land as nation at once and were not torn at all by the heritage (the truth may not be exactly this, but here we had similar sittution, since hte italians were the bigger lot of the imigrants coming from europe after the imperial period, so in most big cities they were relevant to the point a paulist accent has a distinct italian sound and two of the biggest football clubs, founded by italians and named Palestra Italia had to change name to Palmeiras and Cruzeiro to avoid problems). Of course, Brazil was in the periphery of World War, but considering our troops fought directly in Italy only, this gets some importance.


    Guilty. Poe's too European. For me, American literature didn't really set sail until Ishmael and Queequeg hit the high seas. That's my opinion, though, and not my prejudice. But there is an American prejudice against Poe, and it has a preventable cause. Most Americans are given Poe to read in Middle School, which is way too early to understand what he's trying to do for literature. The rationale for this time-honored mistake is that Poe liked fantastical or morbid subjects that teenagers are bound to appreciate. Wrong. Let them read H.P. Lovecraft (or better yet, Arthur Conan Doyle) in Middle School and choose Poe for themselves in High School. Instead, Americans tend to think of Poe as kid stuff and not even fun kid stuff at that.
    It is not much different, Poe is usually understood as a teenager literature here too (and I have seen this happening elsewhere). Of course, this may have a lot to do with the fact Poe was a bit of 40 years old infant terrible, with his morbid tendencies and over-the-top (sometimes) abuse of language and emotions. We still think addults can control themselves, right? The thing is that you american with poe is a bit of that "no prophet is accepted in his own land" thing and over the time , you (as USA) managed to highlight his many flaws leaving the job for the foreigns to highlight his boons. Of course, Poe is good. There is a portuguese saying (ementa pior do the o soneto, the fix worst than the sonet) which is sometimes atributed to Bocage, main portuguese poet of the romantic period, when some wannabe poet asked him to read a sonet and show what could be improved, and Bocage said the poem was so bad that there was nothing to be improved. Poe was often improved by his translators (some better writers than him) and a list of translators with Dostoievisky, Baudelaire, Mallarme, Machado de Assis, Fernando Pessoa, Cortazar, Borges and many others is just a great argument about his importance and quality.

    Anyways, I think reputation may last a long time. Poe was probally a pain in the ***. It is not wonder he is kind the grandfather of Holmes, because he is also some sort of genius that had anti-social tendencies. Poe certainly, despite writting aiming another public, to be reckognized in more specialized circles for his talents. If Holmes would troll in the internet with muppet accounts, Poe would have his own blog attacking the "stabilished authors" and abusing of his power of exageration to provoke (not unlike he did in the stories), just like his odd attack on Longfellow. I can just imagine he calmly talking "Longfellow is not that good poet", but when getting to write down, looking for something to say and going overboad with the plagiarism accusation, while he Poe knew enough about literature to be aware of what Longfellow was doing was not plagiarism, just he wasn't doing it in his byronic ways.

    Anyways, I see no much problem in someone deciding in arbritary way where some literary trend start (be a genre, a national literature, a circle, etc), since Story of Literature is different from History of Literature. Of course, writers belong to their time, we cannot talk about printed books in first century, but chronology does not mean much in the end, things go and start then jump years and start again, move backwards. It all depends how you want to understand that story and use it. One can easily counter your argument with the very dedicatory of Moby Dick, but that does not matter at all.


    The one with the stick figures was a post-resurrection story called The Dancing Men. It was about a mysterious coded message, but there was no jewel in it. The Blue Carbuncle had a jewel, but the plot was better than you describe (the thief hid the jewel by feeding it to a goose, which was accidentally switched with a Christmas goose). There was a lot of footwork in that one. It wasn't just Holmes explaining the solution to Watson. It's a old story.
    oh, yes, it was a legit treasure hunt story, one clue each time for tension. What i meant is that he solves it and mention about the crime and nothing. Watson does not even finish "months latter, the body of..." or "he was caught trying to travel to..." in the end of the story, so relevant it was the treasure hunt than the crime itself.



    So was Zorro, since Batman's creators were really thinking about Errol Flynn pulling himself up and down moving trains with ropes. But okay, Batman's an acrobat.
    Wasnt Tyrone Power? Flynn was the tight pants champion of "anti-taxes", like Captain Blood and Robin, no?



    No, I meant which dies first first, the feeling of national belonging or knowledge/love of the poem. But probably their coming and going are both something like reverberating echoes. And where patriotic literature goes, I think things come and go in cycles--sometimes interrupted by events.
    Ah, i guess it is a egg-chicken thing.

    Ah, but now I am rambling.
    Now?
    #foratemer

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