Media and the Murderer

Jack the Ripper, Steven Avery and an Enduring Formula for Notoriety


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SKU: 9781476681528 Categories: , , , , Tag:
Imprint or Series:Exposit Books

About the Book

Some criminals become household names, while others—even those who seek recognition through their crimes—are forgotten. The criminal’s actions are only a part of every famous true crime story. Other factors, such as the setting and circumstances of the crimes and the ways in which others take control of the narrative, ultimately drive their notoriety. Through a comparison of the tellings and retellings of two famous cases more than a century apart—the Jack the Ripper killings in 1888, and the murder trials of Steven Avery as documented in Making a Murderer—this book examines the complicated dynamics of criminal celebrity.

About the Author(s)

Rebecca Frost is an independent scholar and freelancer. She lives in L’Anse, Michigan.

Bibliographic Details

Rebecca Frost
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 201
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2020
pISBN: 978-1-4766-8152-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4143-0
Imprint: Exposit

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vi
Introduction: The “Popular” in “Popular Crime” 1
Part One. Myths and Men 9
1. Criminality and Celebrity 12
2. Best Foot Forward 23
3. A Criminal’s Roots 35
4. Humanity and Monstrosity 48
5. Guilt, Innocence and the “Truth” 58
Part Two. Situating the Story 69
6. Emerging Media Forms 71
7. “The wrong side of the tracks” 79
8. Making Headlines 89
Part Three. (Not) Naming the Dead 101
9. The Canonical Five 103
10. The Candy Store Owner and the AutoTrader Photographer 113
11. The “Real” Victim 125
Part Four. Good Men Gone Bad 135
12. Behind the Badge 137
13. Dark Conspiracies and Noble Intentions 147
14. The Coroner and the Special Prosecutor 156
Conclusion: Stories for the Ages 166
Chapter Notes 183
Bibliography 187
Index 191