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Journal of Transatlantic Studies

, Volume 7, Issue 1, pp 1–22 | Cite as

Painting rather than photography: exploring spy fiction as a legitimate source concerning UK-US intelligence co-operation

  • Adam D. M. SvendsenEmail author
Article

Abstract

John le Carré’s Perfect Spy was a mythical character who always carried elements of reality. Just like the master novelist’s fictional account of the twilight world of intelligence, real-life spymasters have never wanted the world to know how much of the aura surrounding intelligence is mythical and how much is derived from fact.

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Notes

  1. 1.
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    Wark too neatly captures this type of ‘reality’ distinction, where he states that ‘spy fiction has consistently rested on its use of the artifice of apparent realism’ and its methodology ‘has been to create an alternative or counter-history …’, often offering ‘a near irresistible double guarantee of authenticity’. Wark, ‘Introduction: Fictions of History’, 1.Google Scholar
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Copyright information

© Taylor & Francis 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Politics and International StudiesUniversity of WarwickUK

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