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The Centrality of Crime Fiction in American Literary Culture

Alfred Bendixen Olivia Carr Edenfield



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10 December 2019
Literature: history & criticism; Literary studies: fiction, novelists & prose writers; Communication studies
This collection of essays by leading scholars insists on a larger recognition of the importance and diversity of crime fiction in U.S. literary traditions. Instead of presenting the genre as the property of Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler, this book maps a larger territory which includes the domains of Mark Twain, F. Scott Fitzgerald, William Faulkner, Richard Wright, Flannery O'Connor, Cormac McCarthy and other masters of fiction.The essays in this collection pay detailed attention to both the genuine artistry and the cultural significance of crime fiction in the United States. It emphasizes American crime fiction's inquiry into the nature of democratic society and its exploration of injustices based on race, class, and/or gender that are specifically located in the details of American experience.Each of these essays exists on its own terms as a significant contribution to scholarship, but when brought together, the collection becomes larger than the sum of its pieces in detailing the centrality of crime fiction to American literature. This is a crucial book for all students of American fiction as well as for those interested in the literary treatment of crime and detection, and also has broad appeal for classes in American popular culture and American modernism.
Edited by:   Alfred Bendixen, Olivia Carr Edenfield
Imprint:   Routledge
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 229mm,  Width: 152mm, 
Weight:   472g
ISBN:   9780367878740
ISBN 10:   0367878747
Pages:   304
Publication Date:   10 December 2019
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Primary
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active
CONTENTS Acknowledgements List of Figures Introduction: Re-searching the Premises: The Centrality of Crime Fiction in American Literary Culture, Alfred Bendixen Foundations: 1 Crime and Detection in Mark Twain Peter Messent 2 Lizzie Borden, Spinster on Trial: Journalism, Literature, and the Borden Trial Karen Roggenkamp 3 Dreiser, Dey, and Dime-Novel Crime: The Case of Nick Carter Nathaniel Williams Modernist Crime: 4 The Gatsby Murder Case: F. Scott Fitzgerald, S. S. Van Dine, and Analytic Detective Fiction in the 1920s Kirk Curnutt 5 Preservation and Promotion: Ellery Queen, Magazine Publishing, and the Marketing of Detective Fiction Matthew Levay 6 Diversions of Furniture and Signature Styles: Hammett, Chandler, Macdonald Lee Clark Mitchell 7 Faulkner and the Criminality of Modernity Deborah Clarke 8 Fatal Eyeballing: Sex, Violence and Intimate Voyeurism in Richard Wright's Native Son Andrew Warnes Crime After Modernism: 9 Murderous Neglect in Flannery O'Connor's Fiction Marshall Bruce Gentry 10 Remorse and Redemption: The Crime Fiction of Andre Dubus Olivia Carr Edenfield 11 On Manliness and a Personal Sense of Fitness for Citizenship: Chester Himes and Telling Details in Clothing Norlisha F. Crawford 12 Copy That: Joseph Nazel and African American Crime Narrative in the 1970s Kinohi Nishikawa 13 Swarming Like an Army : Odyssean Warcraft in Elmore Leonard's Early Crime Novels Charles J. Rzepka 14 Cormac McCarthy's Mosaic of Crime and Evil Allen Josephs Notes on Contributors

Alfred Bendixen is Lecturer in the Departments of English, Gender and Sexuality Studies, American Studies, and First Year Program at Princeton University, USA. Olivia Carr Edenfield is Professor in the Department of Literature and Philosophy at Georgia Southern University, USA.

Reviews for The Centrality of Crime Fiction in American Literary Culture

The collection would appeal to those specialising in American popular culture or American modernism. It would be of particular interest for those working on Mark Twain, F. Scott Fitzgerald, William Faulkner, and the postmodern author Cormac McCarthy or those working on the masters of the crime fiction genre such as Hammett, Chandler, Macdonald, and Elmore Leonard. The collection as a whole expresses the importance of crime within American literature and the imaginary line dividing genre and literary fiction. - Anna Kirsch, The International Crime Fiction Association

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