January 31, 2010

a theory of rational progress

When I saw Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Homes, I thought it was fitting that the penetrating intellect of this decidedly English detective becomes secondary to his brawn in the movie. The movie reconstructs Hollywood's ubiquitous fantasy in which masculine, muscled, rugged heroes save the world (and, albeit distantly, America) - just like Arthur Conan Doyle's Holmes saves the (wealth of the) Empire from "hell-hounds" such as Tonga (characterized of course by their "natural" criminality and stupidity).

Yup, appropriation of a colonial fantasy by a neo-colonial one. Here is a very interesting essay if you want to read more about Oriental ideologies playing out in Conan Doyle's detective fictions.

1 comment:

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