Description : Twentieth-Century Crime Fiction aims to enhance understanding of one of the most popular forms of genre fiction by examining a wide variety of the detective and crime fiction produced in Britain and America during the twentieth century. It will be of interest to anyone who enjoys reading crime fiction but is specifically designed with the needs of students in mind. It introduces different theoretical approaches to crime fiction (e.g., formalist, historicist, psychoanalytic, postcolonial, feminist) and will be a useful supplement to a range of crime fiction courses, whether they focus on historical contexts, ideological shifts, the emergence of sub-genres, or the application of critical theories. Forty-seven widely available stories and novels are chosen for detailed discussion. In seeking to illuminate the relationship between different phases of generic development Lee Horsley employs an overlapping historical framework, with sections doubling back chronologically in order to explore the extent to which successive transformations have their roots within the earlier phases of crime writing, as well as responding in complex ways to the preoccupations and anxieties of their own eras. The first part of the study considers the nature and evolution of the main sub-genres of crime fiction: the classic and hard-boiled strands of detective fiction, the non-investigative crime novel (centered on transgressors or victims), and the "mixed" form of the police procedural. The second half of the study examines the ways in which writers have used crime fiction as a vehicle for socio-political critique. These chapters consider the evolution of committed, oppositional strategies, tracing the development of politicized detective and crime fiction, from Depression-era protests against economic injustice to more recent decades which have seen writers launching protests against ecological crimes, rampant consumerism, Reaganomics, racism, and sexism.
Description : "Tells the story of the developing genre of crime fiction, from its 18th century origins in Britain to its contemporary international scope. Ranging from drawing-room murder mysteries to spy fiction, legal dramas, and thrillers, Bradford explores the conventions of the genre, and considers how crime writers have worked to escape the limitations it places on them."--Front flap.
Description : This text explores the ways in which crime fiction manipulates cultural constructions such as race and gender to inscribe dominant cultural discourses. It notes that even those writers who set out to revise conventions repeatedly produce some of the genre's most conservative elements.
Description : Foul and Fair Play is an examination of classic detective fiction as a genre--an attempt to read a wide variety of texts by different authors as variations on a common and relatively tight set of conventions. Marty Roth covers the period from the "prehistory" of detective fiction in Edgar Allan Poe, Charles Dickens, Wilkie Collins, Robert Louis Stevenson, and H. G. Wells up to the 1960s, which marked the end, he says, of the classical period--"the end of an extremely conservative paradigm." The detective fiction genre, as Roth defines it, includes analytic detective fiction, hard-boiled detective fiction, and the spy thriller. Roth insists on the structural common ground of these three types of writing and places them in the larger system of mystery fiction that preceded and surrounds them. The first part of the book consists of a reading of conventions: conventions of character (the detective, the criminal), of gender and sexuality, of narrative style, of settings, and of the curious rules of exchange and coincidence that operate in the realm where detective stories take place. The second section deals with the convoluted epistemology of mystery and detective fiction, depending as it does on other major intellectual developments of the late nineteenth century, such as psychoanalysis. An extremely original study, Foul and Fair Play offers many insights into the literary and cultural history of a popular genre.
Description : Detective Fiction is a clear and compelling look at some ofthe best known, yet least-understood, characters and texts of themodern day. Charles J. Rzepka traces the history of the genre fromits modern beginnings in the early eighteenth century, with thecriminal broadsheets and ‘true’ crime stories of TheNewgate Calendar, to its present state of diversity, innovation,and worldwide diffusion, in a manner that students and scholarsalike will find readable and provocative. The book focuses particularly on the relationship of detectivefiction's emerging ‘puzzle-element’ to theinvestigative methods of the nascent historical sciences, and topopular cultural attitudes toward history, particularly in GreatBritain and the United States. In addition, the author examines thespecific impact of urbanization, the rise of the professions, brainscience, legal and social reform, war and economic dislocation,class-consciousness, and changing concepts of race and gender.Extended close readings of the classics of Detective Fiction inseveral ‘Casebook’ essays devoted to seminal works byPoe, Doyle, Sayers, and Chandler show in detail how the genre hasresponded to these influences over the last century and a half.They also serve to introduce students to a variety of currentcritical approaches. Undergraduate students of Detective and Crime Fiction and ofgenre fiction in general, will find this book essentialreading. ‘Cool, savvy, and utterly compelling: every page ofCharles J. Rzepka’s magnificent history of detective fictiondisplays the forensic panache of the true connoisseur of murder.Commanding an unrivalled breadth of reference and depth of insight,the book is a must-read for everyone interested in detectivefiction.’ Nicholas Roe, University of St Andrews ‘In this sustained analysis of the emergence anddevelopment of detective fiction in England and America, CharlesRzepka has produced both a compelling cultural history and askilful demonstration of what Poe aptly called “the moralactivity which disentangles”. It will become an indispensableguide to serious students of detective literature.’ Ronald R. Thomas, University of Puget Sound
Description : Crime Fiction provides a lively introduction to what is both a wide-ranging and hugely popular literary genre. Using examples from a variety of novels, short stories, films and televisions series, John Scaggs: presents a concise history of crime fiction - from biblical narratives to James Ellroy - broadening the genre to include revenge tragedy and the gothic novel explores the key sub-genres of crime fiction, such as 'Rational Criminal Investigation', The Hard-Boiled Mode', 'The Police Procedural' and 'Historical Crime Fiction' locates texts and their recurring themes and motifs in a wider social and historical context outlines the various critical concepts that are central to the study of crime fiction, including gender, narrative theory and film theory considers contemporary television series like C.S.I.: Crime Scene Investigation alongside the 'classic' whodunnits of Agatha Christie. Accessible and clear, this comprehensive overview is the essential guide for all those studying crime fiction and concludes with a look at future directions for the genre in the twentieth-first century.
Description : Examines the range of American crime fiction from execution sermons of the Colonial era to television programmes like The Sopranos.
Description : The first collection in a two-volume set celebrating American crime fiction contains classic novels of the 1930s and 1940s, including The Postman Always Rings Twice, Thieves Like Us, Nightmare Alley, The Big Clock, They Shoot Horses, Don't They?, and I Married a Dead Man.
Description : A Companion to Crime Fiction presents the definitive guide to this popular genre from its origins in the eighteenth century to the present day A collection of forty-seven newly commissioned essays from a team of leading scholars across the globe make this Companion the definitive guide to crime fiction Follows the development of the genre from its origins in the eighteenth century through to its phenomenal present day popularity Features full-length critical essays on the most significant authors and film-makers, from Arthur Conan Doyle and Dashiell Hammett to Alfred Hitchcock and Martin Scorsese exploring the ways in which they have shaped and influenced the field Includes extensive references to the most up-to-date scholarship, and a comprehensive bibliography