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"The Woman's Brain" By Sherlock Holmes. What Do The Characteristics Of A Great Detective Say? - Crazy Characters
"The Woman's Brain" By Sherlock Holmes. What Do The Characteristics Of A Great Detective Say? - Crazy Characters

Video: "The Woman's Brain" By Sherlock Holmes. What Do The Characteristics Of A Great Detective Say? - Crazy Characters

Video: "The Woman's Brain" By Sherlock Holmes. What Do The Characteristics Of A Great Detective Say? - Crazy Characters
Video: A Tale of Two Brains 2023, December

It is unlikely that anyone would think to consider the image of the genius detective Sherlock Holmes as a person suffering from mental disorders. But why not subject the personality of the beloved hero to a neuropsychiatric analysis?

Positive characters, paradoxically, are rarely perfect, and professional writers know how to draw the reader's attention to their hero.

First example of deduction

People who have a dominant right hemisphere of the brain are usually called "right hemisphere", if the left hemisphere dominates, then "left hemisphere". Neurophysiologists recognize that the left hemisphere is responsible for logic and analysis. Therefore, Conan Doyle's deductive character, who lived on Baker Street, should theoretically be referred to as "left-brain" subjects.

But the right hemisphere is capable of perceiving information as a whole, working through many channels at once and, in conditions of a lack of information, recovering the whole from its parts (this is a sign of inductive thinking). It is also customary to correlate creativity, intuition, and the ability to adapt with the work of the right hemisphere. It provides the perception of reality in all its diversity and complexity, in general with all its constituent elements.

Thus, the logic of the left hemisphere without the help of the right one may turn out to be to some extent flawed, and only their identical activity can bring amazing creative results.

Apparently, both hemispheres of Sherlock Holmes worked with the same intensity - a rare case! And his very serious passion for playing the violin (remember Albert Einstein) is a confirmation of this

But the asymmetry of the brain is more pronounced in men, while women are characterized by a reduced asymmetry of the hemispheres. So, whatever one may say, the brain of the genius detective was closer to the female in its functionality, which seems - especially in the light of the ideas of the 19th century - quite incredible, since the genius was considered to belong only to the male sex.

Second example of deduction

What can we learn about Holmes's psychopathological disorders from those "biographical" crumbs that are scattered in the stories dedicated to him? His characterological features are especially detailed in the first stories and stories. Perhaps Conan Doyle quickly regretted some of the personality traits of his new hero he had communicated, but what he wrote cannot be cut out with an ax. After two large stories, the author moves on to a series of small stories about the investigations of the famous detective, where there is no longer any room for his personality characteristics, and all attention is paid to the flow of the detective story.

We will give those quotes that are related to the psychopathological features of Holmes, and then we will give them a psychiatric assessment.

"Study in crimson tones " (1887):

“… Obsessed with science - for him this already borders on heartlessness. I can easily imagine that he will inject his friend with a small dose of some newly discovered plant alkaloid, not out of malice, but simply out of curiosity, in order to have a clear idea of its action.

“His energy knew no bounds when he found a work verse, but from time to time there was a reaction, and then he lay on the sofa in the living room all day, not saying a word and hardly moving.”

The story "The Sign of the Four " (1890) begins with the following scene:

“Sherlock Holmes took a vial from the fireplace and took out a hypodermic syringe from a neat morocco travel case …

- What today, - I asked, - morphine or cocaine?..

"Cocaine … Would you like to try?.. Drugs are harmful to health."

"The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes " (1891-1892):

“… Holmes, as a true representative of bohemia, who hated all forms of social life, remained in our apartment on Baker Street, buried among his old books, alternating weeks of addiction to cocaine with bouts of ambition, the drowsy state of a drug addict - with the frantic energy inherent in his frantic nature "(" Scandal in Bohemia ").

In Notes on Sherlock Holmes (1892-1893), Conan Doyle is already beginning to gradually justify his hero's addiction:

"He was not committed to any vices, and if occasionally he resorted to cocaine, then perhaps in protest against the monotony of life …" ("Yellow Face"). Moreover, the author did not attribute constant destructive smoking of "strong tobacco" to vices.

“In the character of my friend Holmes, I was often struck by one strange feature: although in his mental work he was the most accurate and accurate of people … in all other respects he was the most disorderly creature in the world and his habits could drive crazy any person living with him under one roof”(“Rite of the House of the Mesgraves”).

“And his dislike of women and his unwillingness to strike up new friendships were quite characteristic of this nature, alien to emotions …” (“The Case of the Translator”).

What do the features of Sherlock Holmes say?

A convinced bachelor who has never experienced romantic feelings for anyone is a vivid evidence of the hyposexuality (if not latent homosexuality) of our hero.

Substance abuse, which Conan Doyle describes as abuse rather than isolated episodes, can be seen as drug addiction, which Sherlock Holmes justifies by self-treating his boredom and other mood disorders.

Cyclothymic mood swings caused him to use either the stimulant cocaine or his "sedative" morphine. And the desire or lack of it to investigate any crime depended on the "interestingness" of the latter.

The detective's entertainment includes both shooting a pistol at the wall of his room (!), And a completely unexpected and rather deep passion for music and polyphonic vocals. Moreover, Conan Doyle from one work to another, in connection with the growing popularity of the hero among readers, begins to present him in an increasingly favorable light.

Like many other heroes of world famous works, Sherlock Holmes is not an accurate illustration of any particular mental disorder.