Doyle Arthur Conan – Memoirs of a Doctor
Doyle Arthur Conan – Memoirs of a doctor: Are you sick? Your health is poor? You are disabled? So do not read the Memoirs of a doctor!
Arthur Conan Doyle, himself, warns you: “If you want a little realism and if you are determined to make your characters doctors and not puppets, you can not avoid portraying the dark side of their practice that, Moreover, it is essential for physicians and surgeons at first sight. It is true that they see many wonderful things, heroism and strength of character, love and sacrifice. But they are also confronted (because we always say confronted with this case) with suffering and hardship. It is impossible to write only the laughing and joyful aspects of the life of these practitioners.
“Then why make a book, will you ask me? Because fiction, for me, is “at home” as much to narrate what is painful as what is happy. To avoid describing hours of anxiety can start from a good feeling but much less, I think, than trying to honestly present the most serious aspects of life. A story that will surprise the reader, disturb his prejudices, shock him and inspire him some serious reflections, will be much more capable of making realize the aspects stimulating and realistic, often bitter indeed, but which contribute to the result. This is the effect I hope for some of the stories in this little collection. I confess that I had so far shared your feelings and had refrained from proposing them for wide distribution. But in this book, the reader will understand that its contents are medical news and, may, if he or she so decides, avoid them. (Letter to an American friend in The Arthur Conan Doyle Encyclopedia, Round the Red Lamp)
So avoid, if you wish, this little collection, sometimes hilarious and often disturbing … We find there a bit of joking humor of Jerome K. Jerome – then publisher of The Idler – who had blown the idea to Arthur Conan Doyle two years before publication. The title of this collection, published in 1894, Round the Red Lamp, refers to the red lamp which was then the sign commonly indicating the office of a doctor.