RE: RARA-AVIS: male fantasy worlds?: Pruett after Doherty

From: Todd Mason (
Date: 22 Aug 2001

I must admit I wondered about the characterization of the PI pulp stories and such extensions as Gold Medal novels as an essentially male domain, although it may well've been, despite the obvious presence of the likes of Daisy Bacon, "Craig Rice," Leigh Brackett, Marijane Meaker/Vin Packer, et alles...certainly the majority, but the near-totality?

And I enjoy Paretsky's, and Muller's, and not a few others' work in this vein...


-----Original Message----- From: Carrie Pruett [mailto:]

Jim Doherty wrote:
> >Moreover, the fantasy is, it seems to me, a
> >specifically male one.

>I really thought it was pretty self-evident, but I'll
>try to give you a basis.

<reasons snipped> Finally, simply because something has been the traditional province of men, there's no reason for women who enter the arena to be seen as "acting male".

  Do some female crime writers consciously tweak the cliches of traditional crime fiction and stand them on their heads? Yes, but lots of crime writers

do that in different ways and frankly I think the boys club attitude needs a

little shaking up.

Incidentally, I'm not a particularly big fan of any of the "female PI" writers (aside from Lehane, since Angie's as important to his books as Patrick is) but I just don't think it makes sense to judge a series based on

the protagonist possessing a "nontraditional gender."

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