Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: The Man of Our Day

From: Mario Taboada (
Date: 06 Aug 2003


<<This feminist academic says women weren't taken seriously in detective novels in the past, you say men aren't taken seriously now.>>

No, I am not saying it. People who have studied contemporary society are saying it. I was not basing my assertion on personal experience. I've been lucky in that respect. From early on, the feminists identified the questions of power quite precisely and accurately.

What to do with the situation has proven very difficult for both men and women. Certainly, legal equality and fair opportunities regardless of sex can be and have been legislated. But people's intimate lives are a lot more complicated. They are not run by proclamations and laws.

Our times may be more enlightened theoretically, but in practice the problems have not gone away. Maybe they are intrinsic, or of such a societal nature that individual efforts are doomed. The modern couple and even the nuclear family are quite new concepts (by a historical time scale).

But the point of the discussion, as brought up by Jay, is literary: how does the PI novel portray relations between the sexes, and does it portray them realistically?

As you mention, the modern PI novel does try to give a more realistic view of male-female relations. This is part of the fleshing out of PI characters (concomitant with the bulking out of the PI novel...). The realism is open to question, of course. And on and on...



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