RARA-AVIS: Introduction/Jason Starr

From: crimeflix ( jmks100@aol.com)
Date: 23 Aug 2004

Hi, Jason Starr here (AKA crimeflix). Bill told me about the switch to Yahoo and thought it would be a good time to join the discussion. I've met a bunch of you already and I'll be at Bouchercon in Toronto as well and I'm hoping I can make it to Bill's Rara-Avis party...

Looking back through the archives a few weeks ago, I read the long thread about noir fiction. I can understand why there's been so much debate about the subject, because noir is such an ambiguous term. While I know this topic has been heavily discussed, I had one thought to share...

In my mind, I think there are 2 kinds of noir--French noir and American noir/the rest of the world's noir. French noir is very broad and includes any work of dark fiction, not just crime or detective fiction. So in France Cold Mountain is considered noir, and Fight Club is noir, and Stephen King is noir, and, hell, Harry Potter is probably even noir. I think "dark and sinister" is an excellent description for French noir, although I don't think French noir necessarily needs to be sinister--dark is good enough...But the rest of the world's noir is different--it's more specific. American noir
(IMHO) is crime fiction that has no detectives or cops (at least not good ones). Usually it's from the point of view of the little guy, or the loser, or the guy who's screwed. It's the opposite of detective fiction where order is restored in book. The endings are usually bleak or ironic...So with the non-French noir definition--Thompson, Cain, Goodis etc would be noir, but Chandler and Hammett are not noir-
-they are hardboiled detective. They are only noir according to the French...

I'm sure this won't settle anything, but glad to be here...

JS http://www.jasonstarr.com

------------------------ Yahoo! Groups Sponsor --------------------~-->
$9.95 domain names from Yahoo!. Register anything. http://us.click.yahoo.com/J8kdrA/y20IAA/yQLSAA/kqIolB/TM

RARA-AVIS home page: http://www.miskatonic.org/rara-avis/
  Yahoo! Groups Links

<*> To visit your group on the web, go to:

<*> To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:

<*> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to:

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 23 Aug 2004 EDT