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Palgrave Macmillan

Crime Fiction since 1800

Detection, Death, Diversity

ISBN 9780230580732
Publication Date April 2010
Formats Hardcover Paperback Ebook (PDF) Ebook (EPUB) 
Publisher Palgrave Macmillan

Since its appearance nearly two centuries ago, crime fiction has gripped readers' imaginations around the world. Detectives have varied enormously: from the nineteenth-century policemen (and a few women), through stars like Sherlock Holmes and Miss Marple, to newly self-aware voices of the present - feminist, African American, lesbian, gay, postcolonial and postmodern.

Stephen Knight's fascinating book is a comprehensive analytic survey of crime fiction from its origins in the nineteenth century to the present day. Knight explains how and why the various forms of the genre have evolved, explores a range of authors and movements, and argues that the genre as a whole has three parts – the early development of Detection, the growing emphasis on Death, and the modern celebration of Diversity.

The expanded second edition has been thoroughly updated in the light of recent research and new developments, such as ethnic crime fiction, the rise of thrillers in the serial-killer and urban collapse modes, and feel-good 'cozies'. It also explores a number of fictional works which have been published in the last few years and features a helpful glossary. With full references, and written in a highly engaging style, this remains the essential short guide for readers of crime fiction everywhere!

STEPHEN KNIGHT is Distinguished Research Professor of English Literature at Cardiff University, UK. He is a leading authority on crime fiction and his previous publications include Form and Ideology in Crime Fiction, also published by Palgrave Macmillan.

Beginning Detection 
Developing Detection
After Sherlock Holmes
Forming the Clue-Puzzle
American Versions
Continuity and Diversity
Diversifying Gender
Diversifying Race and Ethnicity
Diversity: Postmodernity, City, Body
A Glossary of Crime Fiction
A Chronology of Crime Fiction


'This second edition retains the strengths of the first while adding new material and insights.' - Renee Pigeon, California State University, San Bernardino, USA
'Encyclopedic in scope, the second edition offers a succinct, up-to-the-minute analysis and distillation of emerging new trends in crime fiction scholarship, and the work of significant new critics.' - Geraldine Barnes, University of Sydney, Australia
Praise for previous edition:
'Stephen Knight's book is an excellent narrative introduction to crime and detective fiction in the last two hundred years, providing a wealth of detail which will have a very strong appeal to students and which will fill a major gap in the market.' - Clive Bloom, Middlesex University
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