Arthur Conan Doyle Questions and Answers
by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

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Discuss the theme of "How It Happened" by Arthur Conan Doyle?

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Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was a convinced believer in spiritualism, which is based on the belief that human souls live on after death and that living persons can communicate with them, usually through "mediums." It is often overlooked that Doyle begins this story with the following brief explanation:

She was a writing medium. This what she wrote:--

Then the story immediately becomes a first-person narrative by a wealthy country gentleman who loses control of his car and after a harrowing drive down a winding road is killed in a smash-up in front of his home. The narrator is already dead when he is telling this story through the medium, but the reader does not fully realize this until the end, when the narrator meets his old friend Stanley who died during the Boer War.

"Stanley!" I cried, and the words seemed to choke my throat--"Stanley, you are dead."

He looked at me with the same old gentle, wistful smile.

"So are you," he answered.


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