Detective Fiction and Scandal

  • Martin Priestman


The subtitle of this book has several purposes, but the first is to evoke a contrast between the world of high literature, as exemplified by Henry James’s short story ‘The Figure in the Carpet’, and a genre bent on disfiguring the literary drawing-room with corpses. This first chapter, accordingly, will deal with detective fiction as a medium of scandal and shock, comparing its methods with the handling of bloody or shocking crime in other kinds of writing.


Popular Literature Congenital Syphilis Detective Fiction Pure Mind Purloin Letter 
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  1. 12.
    Clement Scott, quoted in Raymond Williams, Drama from Ibsen to Brecht (Harmondsworth, Middx, 1973) p. 17.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Martin Priestman 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin Priestman
    • 1
  1. 1.Roehampton Institute of Higher EducationUK

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