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February Week 4

Teen Reader

  A Scandal in Bohemia

“A Scandal in Bohemia” (1891)

“A Scandal in Bohemia” Text Version

“A Scandal in Bohemia” Audio Version

Arthur Conan Doyle

Arthur Conan Doyle

Arthur Conan Doyle, (born May 22, 1859, Edinburgh, Scotland—died July 7, 1930, Crowborough, Sussex, England), Scottish writer best known for his creation of the detective Sherlock Holmes—one of the most vivid and enduring characters in English fiction.

Conan Doyle, the second of Charles Altamont and Mary Foley Doyle’s 10 children, began seven years of Jesuit education in Lancashire, England, in 1868. After an additional year of schooling in Feldkirch, Austria, Conan Doyle returned to Edinburgh. Through the influence of Dr. Bryan Charles Waller, his mother’s lodger, he prepared for entry into the University of Edinburgh’s Medical School. He received Bachelor of Medicine and Master of Surgery qualifications from Edinburgh in 1881 and an M.D. in 1885 upon completing his thesis, “An Essay upon the Vasomotor Changes in Tabes Dorsalis.”

While a medical student, Conan Doyle was deeply impressed by the skill of his professor, Dr. Joseph Bell, in observing the most minute detail regarding a patient’s condition. This master of diagnostic deduction became the model for Conan Doyle’s literary creation, Sherlock Holmes, who first appeared in A Study in Scarlet, a novel-length story published in Beeton’s Christmas Annual of 1887. Other aspects of Conan Doyle’s medical education and experiences appear in his semiautobiographical novels, The Firm of Girdlestone (1890) and The Stark Munro Letters (1895), and in the collection of medical short stories Round the Red Lamp (1894). Conan Doyle’s creation of the logical, cold, calculating Holmes, the “world’s first and only consulting detective,” sharply contrasted with the paranormal beliefs Conan Doyle addressed in a short novel of this period, The Mystery of Cloomber (1889). Conan Doyle’s early interest in both scientifically supportable evidence and certain paranormal phenomena exemplified the complex diametrically opposing beliefs he struggled with throughout his life.

 “A Scandal in Bohemia” Discussion Questions

When Holmes comments “Wedlock suits you,” do you think he is being serious or sarcastic? Why?

Why do you think Holmes doesn’t seem to take the case seriously at first? What changes his mind?

How is Watson’s marriage relevant to the story? Is it relevant at all?

Holmes calls Irene Adler "the woman" because she is unlike any other women he's met and she is able to outmatch him in intelligence and wit. Do you think this title is a compliment? What does his title for Adler say about Holmes general attitude towards other women?

Why is Irene Adler’s intelligence depicted as “surprising?” How does this impact the story and the reader’s perception of her?

What role does royalty play in the story?

How is the theme of marriage and intimate relationships explored in the story?

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In Spanish

Mi Papi Tiene Una Moto