Sherlock Holmes and Racism


This week I am finding it difficult to stomach the racism in 'The Sign of Four' by Arthur Conan Doyle. Whilst I wouldn't want to ban it, I would draw the line at using it as a text on an examination syllabus, Mr Gove. Yes, we can say 'here is an example of how Victorians thought about other races'

, but a lot of that will go over students' heads and they'll only remember that Tonga was the real baddie - 'the black cannibal...[who] would eat raw meat and dance his war-dance'.


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