William Simon Reading 18-22 Abbi Stanley
What are the characteristics of the hard-boiled detective? • The stereotypical hard-boiled detective is described as being: • Tough • Violent • Male • Laconic • Loner • Hinted at being an alcoholic • A disregard for women except in a sexual sense • Fast talking charmer • At ease in the ‘streets’ • Other ways of describing the hard-boiled detective also include an uber-masculinity and a restorer of equilibrium to societies where there is great change.
What changes were made to the hard-boiled detective in the 1970s? Why? The death of the aristocratic British detectives called for a new character The detective archetype became professional and cunning More realistic
What role does the reader assume in crime fiction? Complicity between detective and reader As well as between reader and criminal Use of first person allows this As well as establishes the reader as a solitary figure
How does empathy operate in the reading of crime fiction? Criminals motive Using ‘I’ Reader ‘becomes’ the characters
What questions are raised about our interest in crimes? • Our interest in crime fiction could be narrowed down to: • The security felt when a criminal is caught • Reaffirmation of the status quo • Sense of restored balance