The Valhalla Murders, My Favorite Murder Podcast, and Paranoid/Reparative Engagement with True Crime and Crime Fiction

I recently watched the Icelandic police procedural series, The Valhalla Murders (2019, 2020). It is loosely based on a national scandal from the 1940s about a state institution for troubled boys who, after being put in state care, suffered abuse at the hands of staff, according to this MEAWW article. The Nordic Noir series re-imagines … Continue reading The Valhalla Murders, My Favorite Murder Podcast, and Paranoid/Reparative Engagement with True Crime and Crime Fiction

A Lost Modernist Manifesto, or: S. S. Van Dine’s Rules for Detective Fiction

We’re apparently on the theme of “genre” this week! This post is about how the “detective fiction” genre was defined in the twentieth century (more or less). Folks who are dedicated fans or critics of detective fiction have probably heard of S.S. Van Dine, the pseudonym of an American detective fiction writer who was popular … Continue reading A Lost Modernist Manifesto, or: S. S. Van Dine’s Rules for Detective Fiction

The Genre of Crime Discourse

Without nerding out too much, I think it’s important to acknowledge the term “genre” as important for this blog. The idea of “genre” comes from the classical (e.g. ancient Greek) writings about forms: namely, that there are different kinds of forms that serve different purposes. The word “genre” comes from the French for “kind.” Aristotle’s … Continue reading The Genre of Crime Discourse

What happens when a Spy Thriller, a Police Procedural, the Sci-Fi genre, and Conspiracy Theories Intersect?

So, I was going to post this thought/observation about scifi and postmodern crime fiction, and what they might tell us about our real world political and social structures and processes, but given the attempted fascist coup yesterday that culminated in a terrorist attack on the U.S. Capitol building, I decided I need to post this … Continue reading What happens when a Spy Thriller, a Police Procedural, the Sci-Fi genre, and Conspiracy Theories Intersect?