Murder 101

Essays on the Teaching of Detective Fiction


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About the Book

This collection of essays examines how college professors teach the genre of detective fiction and provides insight into how the reader may apply such strategies to his or her own courses.
Multi-disciplinary in scope, the essays cover teaching in the areas of literature, law, history, sociology, anthropology, architecture, gender studies, cultural studies, and literary theory. Also included are sample syllabi, writing assignments, questions for further discussion, reading lists, and further aids for course instruction.

About the Author(s)

Edward J. Rielly is a professor of English at Saint Joseph’s College of Maine. He has presented papers at the annual Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture as well as other conferences. He is the author of about two dozen books and lives in Westbrook, Maine.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Edward J. Rielly
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 252
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliographies, index
Copyright Date: 2009
pISBN: 978-0-7864-3657-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1224-9
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      vi


Edward J. Rielly      1

Exploring the Origins of American Detective Fiction: Teaching Poe and Dime Novels

Pamela Bedore      3

Detective Fiction, Cultural Categories, and the Ideology of Criticism

Stephen Brauer      13

Teaching International Detective Fiction

Patricia P. Buckler      25

Undergraduates and Hispanic Sleuths: The Importance of University Cor(ps)e Requirements in a Liberal Learning Curriculum

Benjamin Fraser      38

Contemporary Detective Fiction Across the English Curriculum

Genie Giaimo      51

Holmes Is Where the Art Is: Architectural Design Projects

Derham Groves      61

Southern Crime: The Clash of Hero and Villain in a Writing Course

Mary Hadley      70

Adding Some Mystery to Cultural Studies

Steve Hecox      79

Teaching Detective Fiction from a Feminist Perspective

Ellen F. Higgins      87

Fixing and Un-Fixing Words: Nastiness, Fidelity, and Betrayal in Chandler’s and Hawks’s The Big Sleep

Alexander N. Howe      96

Historical Mysteries in the Literature Classroom

Rosemary Johnsen      106

African Crime/Mystery Stories: Triggering Provocative Classroom Topics

Virginia Macdonald      115

Murder in the Classroom: Teaching Detective Fiction at the Graduate Level

Lois A. Marchino and Deane Mansfield-Kelley      126

Introducing Literature through Detective Fiction: An Approach to Teaching Online

Meg Matheny      137

Mysteries of O’ahu: Local Detective Fiction in the Composition Classroom

Stanley D. Orr      145

1930s-1940s Hard-Boiled Detective Fiction and 1940s–1950s

Detective Noir

Christine Photinos      157

Anthropologists as Detectives and Detectives as Anthropologists

James C. Pierson      166

“Just the Facts”: Detective Fiction in the Law School Curriculum

Robert C. Power      178

Margaret Coel’s The Story Teller in a Literary Criticism Course

Edward J. Rielly      187

Women Detectives in Contemporary American Popular Culture

Deborah Shaller      194

Reading Students Reading Detectives

Rosemary Weatherston      206

Detective Fiction in the First-Year Seminar

Robert P. Winston and Judy Gill      217

The Mystery of Composition: A Detective-Themed Composition Course

Chris York      227

Notes on Contributors      235

Index      241