Select Two Short Stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle which you Believe

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Select Two Short Stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle which you Believe

are Particularly Effective Examples of the Detective Fiction Genre.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle uses many literary devices to convey an

impression of suspense and mystery. To do this, he uses a proven

formula in all his stories which the readers find effective. He was

successful because his stories dealt with the relevant problems of

that time such as; inept policing, Jack the Ripper, opium dens, and so

Sherlock Holmes was the antidote and exactly what everyone needed, he

was an extremely well-developed character. It was early days of the

genre and so people didn’t know what to expect, it was a totally new

read and many enjoyed it. Doyle’s stories dealt with known and

familiar locations and issues such as the role of science being true

and not superstition or religion. It was very successful in the late

19th century and early 20th, but some people today say that it has

slow moving and two-dimensional plots. This may be due to the

obsession of technology today or the relationship between violence and

the genre today.

The two stories I will be exploring in depth are, ‘The Cardboard Box’,

and ‘The Speckled Band’ and there will be references to other stories

as well. I will be comparing the features in the stories and exploring

the style of Doyle and the detective genre and why it was so

successful. To ensure that the mystery itself is properly described,

no detail is left out and this creates vivid images. The details that

Doyle puts across are not softened in any way and this makes the story

seem more believable. He goes to great lengths to describe everything

so that a full picture can be constructed without leaving anything to

the imagination.

The Cardboard Box is about a mystery where two ears are sent to a lady and Holmes has to find out whose ears they are and why they were sent to the lady. The story starts with Watson and Holmes in conversation with reflects their friendship for each other and in most stories they are shown to be loyal to each other. They read an article in the newspaper about Miss Cushing who receives a parcel with “Two human ears, apparently quite freshly severed.” Holmes goes to see Miss Cushing and they talk about the mystery. “That is my trade”, shows the arrogance of Holmes which is shown in nearly all the stories. Holmes does his investigating with Watson at his side. He finds out all the information he wants from Miss Cushing.

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