Re: RARA-AVIS: Characteristics of noir

From: Mario Taboada (
Date: 11 Feb 2003

The term "noir" is visual. It evokes suggestive, even sinister black and white photography. However, literature needs no such props. Certainly some of Conrad's works qualify as noir literature. And I doubt that anyone who has seen a great performance of Hamlet (we don't have Gielgud's on film, which is reputedly the greatest of all) will agree that this drama is noir, too.

Whitfield's fatherhood (attributed by me to him) of noircannot be defended outside of American crime writing. Just the other day I reread Gald󳧳 great novel _Tristana_
(made into a great movie by Bu񵄬) and if that isn't noir, I don't know what is. I could go on and mention some of Pirandello's stories, then go on to French and English literature, then Russian, and so on. Ah, yes, Dostoyevsky's
_The Gambler_...



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