Late Victorian Crime Fiction in the Shadows of Sherlock

Hardcover | September 26, 2014

byClare Clarke

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The 1880s and 1890s were the years in which detective fiction firmly established itself as a genre and sealed its popularity with the reading public. Late-Victorian Crime Fiction in the Shadows of Sherlock, 1885 - 1900 investigates representations of detectives and criminals in both canonical and forgotten crime fiction at this key juncture, challenging studies which have given undue prominence to a handful of key figures. This study offers an alternative, and much fuller, account of late-Victorian detective fiction, concentrating particularly on the stories which illustrate the nascent genre's often overlooked capacity for narrative and moral complexity. It examines a selection of stories where detectives are criminals and murderers, where criminals are heroes, or where crimes go unsolved. Arthur Conan Doyle's canonical Sherlock Holmes stories and Robert Louis Stevenson's novels are considered alongside works by neglected authors Fergus Hume, Israel Zangwill, Arthur Morrison, and Guy Boothby. These fascinating 'Shadows of Sherlock' showcase the often wholly overlooked formal and moral diversity of late-Victorian crime writing, forcing us to rethink our preconceptions about what the nineteenth-century detective genre is and does.

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The 1880s and 1890s were the years in which detective fiction firmly established itself as a genre and sealed its popularity with the reading public. Late-Victorian Crime Fiction in the Shadows of Sherlock, 1885 - 1900 investigates representations of detectives and criminals in both canonical and forgotten crime fiction at this key jun...

Clare Clarke is Assistant Professor of Nineteenth-Century Literature at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. She specialises in detective fiction and the literature and culture of the late-Victorian era. Her research has been published in CLUES, Women's Writing, and Victorian Literature and Culture.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:232 pages, 8.88 × 5.55 × 0.82 inPublished:September 26, 2014Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230390536

ISBN - 13:9780230390539

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Table of Contents

Introduction
1.'Ordinary Secret Sinners': Robert Louis Stevenson's Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1886).
2.'The most popular book of modern times': Fergus Hume's The Mystery of a Hansom Cab (1886).
3.'L'homme c'est rien - l'oeuvre c'est tout': the Sherlock Holmes stories and work.
4.Something for 'the silly season': Policing and the Press in Israel Zangwill's The Big Bow Mystery (1891).
5.Tales of 'mean streets': the criminal-detective in Arthur Morrison's The Dorrington Deed-Box (1897).
6.A Criminal in Disguise': class and empire in Guy Boothby's A Prince of Swindlers (1897).
Conclusion
Works Cited
Index