RE: RARA-AVIS: Re: Those were the days

From: Chris Routledge (
Date: 09 Sep 2000

Anthony Dauer wrote:

>All authors including (or especially including) diarists or historians write
>even nonfiction from a subjective point of view ... reporters report the
>reality of our daily existence with a subjective slant based upon their own
>beliefs as well as their perspectives ... history is his-story quite
>literally at times. Oh, there's undeniable facts of course ... Lincoln is
>dead ...

Sure, I agree. But that still doesn't explain why hard-boiled writing is considered more realistic than the cozies. That world existed too, you know, and while most people were unlikely to experience life in an English country vicarage, I suspect the appeal of reading about it was at least in part one of vicarious experience and admiration for those who did. That, it seems to me, is what hard-boiled fiction depends on too. In this respect it's rather like the protestant reformation: if the cozies are the Catholic church, offering liturgy in Latin and demanding heavy taxes, the American hard-boiled writers, like Martin Luther, offered a translated bible, and a liturgy people could understand. That doesn't mean the contrivances went away, though, they just became better presented for local conditions.

Cheers Chris

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