RARA-AVIS: Re: Deadheads & the Laughing Policeman

From: Jacques Debierue ( matrxtech@yahoo.com)
Date: 06 Jul 2007

--- In rara-avis-l@yahoogroups.com, "caroli1975" <karabair@...> wrote:

> I'm not sure what you mean by 'cosiness' -- would that be
> psychological distance, and lack of aggressiveness?

Part of it may be cultural: the distance between two British speakers is not at all the same as between two American speakers. This includes the distance between a writer and his reader.

>It seems you're
> implying that anything that's noir must be "cosy" -- a label that I'm
> resisting because it's so often used dismissively.

Absolutely not, that's not what I was trying to say. I was using
"cosy" (spelled like that) in order to convey a certain mateyness between writer and reader, something that most American crime writers avoid. The hardboiled ones all avoid it.

I don't think that
> the mainstream UK police procedural (represented here by James,
> Rendell, and in a slightly off-center sense, by Hill) is cosy by any
> stretch of the imagination. They all delve into dark corners of
> psychology, they have protagonists constantly worn down by the things
> they encounter, and contain plenty of other aspects that make the
> writing more than superficial. Like I said, they're not noir, but
> that's a categorization, rather than a value judgment.

Yes, definitely a categorization, and an eternally fluctuating one, be it American or British noir.



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