RARA-AVIS: Re: can noir writers advocate social reform?

From: Bludis Jack ( buildsnburns@yahoo.com)
Date: 28 Nov 2006

Al Guthrie said, "I don't drive a car. Does that make me an anarchist?"

I don't know about England, but in the US that would make you a communist--or poor.
-------- Miker said, "In most noirs, the protagonist is doomed because of immoral actions, a lack of personal integrity."

That is as close to my observation as I've seen, but I would add that sometimes the noir character has been moral and has had integrity right up until the point that he or she becomes obsessed or has a need that draws him into the vortex where of doom.

One character who falls into this category is Harry Morgan in Hemingway's novel, "To Have and Have Not."

It "seems" that Hemingway was illustrating the diffeences between those who have and those who have not. I haven't read anyplace that he was advocating social reform, though.

Another book full of such characters where I think that is true is in "They Shoot Horses, Don't They," although Horace McCoy's story is told in flashback.

Jack Bludis

*Shadow of the Dahlia* available at MysteryLovesCompany.com

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