‘It’s a narsty biziness’ : conservatism and subversion in 1930s detective fiction and thrillers

White, G ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4826-5190 2021, '‘It’s a narsty biziness’ : conservatism and subversion in 1930s detective fiction and thrillers' , in: The 1930s: A Decade of Modern British Fiction , The Decades Series , Bloomsbury, pp. 239-272.

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Abstract

This chapter focuses on popular fiction and particularly the crime genre, encompassing both the detective story and the thriller. Critical surveys looking back across the decades finds these subgenres difficult to distinguish over time but writers of the 1930s are very much aware of which subgenre they are writing in and its relative status. In 1942 Nicholas Blake asserted that ‘It is an established fact that the detective novel proper is read almost exclusively by the upper and professional classes. The so-called “lower middle” and “working classes” tend to read “bloods”, thrillers.’ And, he points out, ‘the modern thriller is generally much below the detective story in sophistication and style’ (xxii) Given the perceived hierarchy of readership and regard, defining the difference between these subgenres became important to some authors.

Item Type: Book Section
Editors: Hubble, N, Seabor, L and Taylor, E
Schools: Schools > School of Humanities, Languages & Social Sciences
Journal or Publication Title: The 1930s: A Decade of Modern British Fiction
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Series Name: The Decades Series
ISBN: 9781350079144 (Hardback); 9781350079168 (ebook); 9781350079175 (ebook)
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Dr Glyn White
Date Deposited: 21 Nov 2019 15:33
Last Modified: 13 Jun 2021 02:30
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/53143

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