Saturday, April 17, 2010

Empire in Holmes

As we discussed in class I think that there are obvious attacks of class and empire in Sherlock Holmes. For me one of the most interesting pieces of the book was when the KKK becomes a part of the action. That entire story is very gothic because of the disappearance of the ship and at the beginning of it the semblance of haunting that is created by the letters inscribed with KKK. It seems like the spoils of imperialism and empire are coming back to haunt the British. This is because the letter is addressed from India as well as it directly references American slavery which is a part of the British colonial legacy. While Holmes identifies the murderers they are not caught which to me suggests that even though unjust wrongs have been done to British people, those small injustices do not absolve them from the sin of empire. The lack of clear resolution says that there can be no justice for the British who have been operating and profiting from unjust rule for so long. It's a very dark reading but I think pretty appropriate.

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