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The Sleuth and the Scholar
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Is the detective novel popular fiction or serious literature? This collection of essays examines the historical, literary, and critical aspects of the genre. Three interrelated aspects of detective fiction are addressed: the mystery story as a vehicle for social criticism, women crime writers, and the American hard-boiled detective story--its origins in cowboy fiction, recent trends, and whether the mean streets still belong exclusively to men. Contributors span the ranks of well-known crime writers, popular critics of detective fiction, and academic scholars. This unusual volume aptly illustrates the nature and attractions of a style of fiction that was once dismissed as merely sensational and is now seen as mainstream.
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Table of Contents

Foreword by Robin W. Winks Keynote Address: Gender and Detective Fiction: by Carolyn Heilbrun Mysteries as Social Criticism Detection and Ethics: The Case of P. D. James by Dennis Porter Chandler Comes to Harlem: Racial Politics in the Thrillers of Chester Himes by Peter J. Rabinowitz The Social-Domestic World of June Thomson's Detective Chief Inspector Jack Finch-Rudd by John McAleer Women in Crime Writing Seeley Regester: America's First Detective Novelist by B. J. Rahn Let's Hear It for Agatha Christie: A Feminist Appreciation by Michele Slung A Sweep Throught the Subgenres by Marilyn Stasio Down These Mean Streets Hard-Boiled Virgil: Nineteenth-Century Beginnings of a Popular Literary Formula by William W. Stowe The Hard-Boiled Detective Story: From the Open Range to the Mean Streets by Richard Slotkin Elmore Leonard: Splitting Images by Glenn W. Most Annotated Bibliography by Susan Steinberg Poisoned Pens: Book Discussion List

About the Author

BARBARA A. RADER is a Scholar/Consultant to the Southern Connecticut Library Council.HOWARD G. ZETTLER, retired Professor of English, Central Connecticut State University, is a freelance writer and editor.

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