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November 1996, Week 4


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"Do not read this line." <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 25 Nov 1996 11:26:56 -0400
text/plain (37 lines)
in a conversation with a colleague prompted by the RED HARVEST exchange it
was pointed out to me that the hard boiled detective (that we associate
with--among other names--d hammett) is clearly a descendent of
   the lonesome cowboy:
         the [definitively?] masculinist hero/protagonist who operates
pretty much alone, observes a moral code that may well require the breaking
of legal codes, whose life intesects with that of some woman but who remains
alone and lonely, and whose success at [re]solving the specific problem posed
by the plot nevertheless does not end up as a comic [that is, redeemed]
character but insists on holding on to a more tragic or ironic posture and
        now all of this seemed so obvious when pointed out  that i could
hardly believe that it had never occurred to me before . . . indeed it was
one of those ideas that, within minutes, i was convinced i had ALWAYS known .
. . so i have a couple of questions for the list
        1.  is this idea as obvious and compelling as i for the moment
think, or is there something i'm missing that might throw a monkey wrench
into what is a too facile equation?
        2.   is this idea conventionally a part of the scholarship and
criticism on the western, hard-boiled detective story, and noir modes and
mythologies  that i somehow have managed to miss [or forget]? . . . are thre
any "standard" or important explorations of this connection? (has leslie
fielder wirtten about this--he must have, no???)
        3 (or 2a)--are there any recommended works on the political (regular
politics/cultural politics/sexual politics) of this package of meanings??
mike frank
implications (both conventional politics,
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