The <i>Sound</i> of the Baskervilles: Sonic Clues to a (Literary) Crime Scene



crime, detection, soundscape, Sherlock Holmes, A. Conan Doyle


This essay proposes a reading of A. Conan Doyle’s The Hound of the Baskervilles (1901-02) from the perspective of soundscape studies. It applies the lexicon, taxonomy, and strategies of this field of study to the interpretation of the literary crime scene(s). To sustain its ideas, the essay takes into consideration a few other stories from the Holmes canon as well. The essay reveals the importance of the soundscape as a fundamental element not only in the economy of the investigation, but also in Doyle’s project of post-Darwinian restructuring of reality. So, together with Doyle’s need for rendering a coherent vision of the universe in his novel, the essay also considers his need for rendering a coherent hearing of the universe.

Author Biography

Alessandra Calanchi, University of Urbino "Carlo Bo," Italy

Dept of Science of Communication, Humanities and International Studies (DISCUI) Professor of Anglo-American Literature and Culture