Father of the Mystery/Crime story: › Edgar Allan Poe, who wrote “ The Murders of the Rue Morgue” in 1841 › First Detective: Auguste C. Dupin
"a murder victim is found inside an apparently sealed enclosure and the detective's challenge is to discover the murderer's modus operandi” Most famous example: › The Murders in the Rue Morgue"
from the aesthetics of the situation to a more intellectual reality, moving the story from "a focus on the superficial trappings of eerie setting and shocking event to a study of the criminal's mind." (Crime Classics)
Charles Dickens - "Bleak House" (1853). "The Mystery of Edwin Drood" (1870). Wilkie Collins - "The Woman in White" (1860). "The Moonstone" (1868). Anna Katherine Green (became first woman to write a detective novel) "The Leavenworth Case" (1878).
Must have a detective (usually eccentric) The official police must be bumblers Clues must be presented to the reader The author must not tell a lie Many writers begin their stories with the impact of the crime, then work backwards to reconstruct the incomplete fragments of what is known into a more intelligible whole crime of choice in detective fiction is murder
born May 22, 1859, Edinburgh, Scotland -died July 7, 1930, Crowborough, Sussex, England Known as the author of the Sherlock Holmes stories Went to medical school - knighted (1902) for his work with a field hospital in Bloemfontein, South Africa, and other services during the South African (Boer) War. Published his stories in The Strand Magazine
Sherlock Holmes › is a “character whose intelligence was formidable, turning the solving of crimes into a science” › A rational thinker, who pieces information together to draw an inescapable conclusion, one that was not evident to the others in the story.
Similar Plot Line › Introduce the crime › Presentation of the case as “unique” or “singular” › Adding odd characters › Watson’s ignorance or lack of understanding of the case and his use as Holmes’ foil › The setting out of clues/introduction of false clues › Adding complications to the case › The resolution and explanation of the crime by Holmes
Key Vocab: Foil - A foil is a character who serves as a contrast to another perhaps more primary character, so as to point out specific traits of the primary character. (Dr. Watson - narrator) Verisimilitude: The sense that what one reads is "real," or at least realistic and believable.
Key Vocab: Red Herring - An action, theme, or piece of information meant to lead a character or the reader astray. Mysteries often employ red herrings to complicate the plot and draw the reader’s attention away from the real solution, thus prolonging the pleasure of reading.
1890-1976 - Devon, England Married Archie Christie, a WWI fighter pilot in 1914 She worked as a nurse, wrote on the side
1st novel: The Mystery Affair at Styles - introduces detective - Hercule Poirot › Wrote 30 novels featuring Poirot 1926 - troubled marriage - divorce - remarriage to Max Mallowan (archeologist) In 1971 she was awarded the high honor of becoming a Dame of the British Empire.
Her play, The Mousetrap, continues to run at St Martin’s Theatre in London. It is the longest running stage play in the world. Agatha Christie wrote more than 80 novels in her lifetime, earning her the title of “The Queen of Crime”
Gardner - author of novels featuring Perry Mason (later turned into a tv show) Other famous TV detectives/shows - Columbo, Murder She Wrote, Dragnet, Hawaii 5-0, Kojak, Other Novels - Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys