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Women Writers and Detectives in Nineteenth-Century Crime Fiction : The Mothers of the Mystery Genre - Lucy Sussex

Women Writers and Detectives in Nineteenth-Century Crime Fiction

The Mothers of the Mystery Genre

Hardcover Published: 16th July 2010
ISBN: 9780230272293
Number Of Pages: 216

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Since its invention in the nineteenth century, detective fiction has never been more popular, In novels, short stories, films, radio, television and now in computer games, private detectives and psychopaths, prim poisoners and overworked cops, tommy-gun gangsters and cocaine criminals are the very stuff of modern imagination, and their creators a mainstay of popular conciousness. Crime Files is a ground-breaking series offering scholars, students and discerning readers a comprehensive set of guides to the world of crime and detective fiction. Every aspect of crime writing, detective fiction, gangster movie, true-crime expose, police procedural and post-colonial investigation is explored through clear and informative texts offering comprehensive coverage and theoretical sophistication.

Women Writers and Detectives in Nineteenth-Century Crime Fiction is a study of the `mothers' of the mystery genre, showing that early detective writing was as much a feminine as it was a masculine domain. Traditionally the nineteenth-century `creation' of crime writing has been ascribed to Poe, Wilkie Collins and Conan Doyle, but they had formidable female rivals, competing with them commercially and for critical acclaim. Their work has been until recently largely forgotten, and a study of the precursors to Agatha Christie, Sara Paretsky and P.D. James has never been completed before. The purpose of this book is to `cherchez les femmes', in a project of rediscovery.

'Lucy Sussex...makes a persuasive case for many of the neglected female progenitors of the detective genre; the final effect of this concise but information-packed volume will be to send readers out to scour bookshop shelves for some neglected but intriguing women writers.'

- Barry Forshaw, Crime Time

'...a wide-ranging excavation of the work of lesser-known authors such as Catherine Crowe and Metta Victoria Fuller as well as more famous figures, including Mary Braddon and Anna Katharine Green.' - Emelyne Godfrey, 'Top History Moments of 2010', History Today

'If ever a volume filled a gap and served a niche audience, this is it...a volume well worth owning...' - Choice

List of Illustrations
Introduction: Look for the Women
'Origins are Multifarious and Unclean!': the Beginnings of Crime Fiction
Mrs Radcliffe as Conan Doyle?
'A Most Preposterous Organ of Wonder': Catherine Crowe
'I'm a Thief-taker, Young Lady'
Getting Away with Murder: Mary Braddon
'Dead! AndâÇ Never Called Me Mother': Ellen (Mrs Henry) Wood
The (Feminine) Eye of the Law: Mary Helena Fortune
A Jill-of-all-Writing-Trades: Metta Victoria Fuller Victor ('Seeley Regester')
The Art of Murder: Anna Katharine Green
Conclusion: 'She Has Got a Murderess in Manuscript in her Bedroom'
A Timeline of Early True Crime and its Fiction
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780230272293
ISBN-10: 0230272290
Series: Crime Files
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 216
Published: 16th July 2010
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 21.59 x 13.97  x 2.03
Weight (kg): 0.4
Edition Number: 1