RARA-AVIS: Re: the lousy Hammett review in Salon

Kevin Burton Smith (kvnsmith@colba.net)
Sun, 24 Oct 1999 13:51:46 -0400

Feminists hate Hammett?

Oh, come on. In the real world, being a feminist and liking Hammet are not mutually exclusive. Let's leave the conspiracy theories for the self-obsessed, artificial, closed world of academia and the paranoid alternative universe of talk radio call-in shows.

As a feminist myself, I see relatively little in Hammett's work that really bothers me (especially given the time it was written), and much that actually seems sympathetic to women (again, especially given the time). Now Hammett's life is another story, but then, this ain't People Magazine.

And, while Bowman's review seems to be his usual uninformed, pseudo-literary tripe, even the most ardent fan of Hammett has to admit that not all the stories in NIGHTMARE TOWN rank among his best. I don't think anyone should be kicked out of the He-Man Woman-Hater's Club just for saying the title story, for example, is pretty much on the lame side.

Kevin Burton Smith The Thrilling Detective Web Site http://www.colba.net/~kvnsmith/thrillingdetective/ IT'S OFFICIAL! October is Dashiell Hammett Month. Don't play the sap for anyone.

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