RARA-AVIS: Agents for the Empire

From: Frederick Zackel ( fzackel@wcnet.org)
Date: 04 Nov 2005

"crime fiction is no longer the revolutionary medium it once was, but rather propaganda for the status quo,"

You thought it once was? How was it ever different than propaganda for the status quo? How could it ever be different than propaganda for the status quo? To be published within the Herd, you must be a partner with the Herd.
"They all move as one" is not to be taken lightly.

Crime doesn't pay unless the Empire doesn't notice you. Every cop is an Agent for the Empire. Every cop acts as an Agent for the Empire. So does every journalist, every scriptwriter, every novelist, as does every judge, attorney, or any other government worker. Crime fiction demands a Happy Ending, as long as the Happy Ending is in the Eyes of the Empire. In the Eyes of the Empire, anybody not tacitly consenting to Our Side of the Story is an outlaw. Cull him from the Herd.

If in noir, the protagonist is screwed, if he is "going to fry in hell forever," well, that's a happy ending for the Empire. (We are better off without him. He was "in the way," or he was "uppity." Or he was a drag on the herd, slowing us down.) If the protagonist grabs the money and runs, then he has chosen between "love it or leave it." So be it. If he leaves, we can forget him. If we catch him, we erase him.

You want a Revolution? Steal a used car. Expect nothing.

Frederick Zackel

Reading a vampire novel, she got a nose bleed.

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This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 04 Nov 2005 EST