Tag Archives: crime fiction

Writing and Translating Crime Fiction during Italian Fascism

Caterina Sinibaldi   University of Manchester

Donna LeonOver the last twenty years, Italian crime fiction has attracted growing scholarly attention, both in Italy and in the Anglophone world. If, on the one hand, this is due to a renewed interest in previously neglected areas of ‘letteratura popolare’, on the other it cannot be denied that Italy itself has become a central theme in crime fiction. Not only have contemporary Italian authors, such as Carlo Lucarelli and Andrea Camilleri, gained international success, but also British and North-American authors (Michael Dibdin and Donna Leon, just to mention two) have chosen to set their detective stories in Italy.

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Crime fiction, society, history

978-0-7864-7652-7Crime fiction has become an increasingly popular instrument for analysing whatever social and cultural order there once was and now is. Contributions to the genre are investigated, using some of the same techniques deployed by their protagonists, for the street-life materials and perspectives which many sociological analyses leave out. Shifts in the nature of the crimes and the character of criminals and their pursuers, hapless, heroic or just plain human, are scrutinised for the light they can shed on long-term political and cultural changes. The evolution of Italian crime fiction has recently been tracked in detail by Barbara Pezzotti in her Politics and Society in Italian Crime Fiction: An Historical Overview (2014), which takes the reader from Mondadori’s launch of i libri gialli in 1929 up to the work of Marcello Fois and his use of the genre to probe Sardinian identity.

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Workshop on crime fiction: Melbourne, 21 Nov 2014

Crime-Scene

A one-day workshop on researching and teaching Italian crime fiction, sponsored by ACIS and La Trobe University and convened by Barbara Pezzotti (ACIS) and Brigid Maher (La Trobe), will be held on Friday 21 November 2014 at the La Trobe University City Campus, 215 Franklin St, Melbourne CBD, from 9 am to 5 pm. Stephen Knight (Melbourne) will give the opening address; postgraduates working on crime fiction will be especially welcome. Click here for the call for papers. Participation is free and lunch/tea/coffee will also be provided. We will update the information on the workshop page on the Conferences menu above, where you will also find a contact form for any questions or further details.

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Crime Fiction Conferences in 2014/2

Barbara Pezzotti    ACIS

cropped-wordpress_cover_2014_1Dear crime fiction lovers, here two more conferences that will take place in 2014: “True Crime. Facts, Fiction, Ideology” Conference, Manchester, 6-7 June 2014; and “Crime Fiction: Here and There and Again”,  2nd International Postgraduate Conference, University of Gdańsk (Poland) and the State School of Higher Professional Education in Elbląg, 11-13 September 2014. The deadline for presenting an abstract for both conferences is 31 March.They both look very interesting. Continue reading

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Crime Fiction Conferences in 2014/1

Barbara Pezzotti   ACIS

combined

The year 2014 has been blessed with quite a few crime fiction conferences. Here are the first two, whose deadlines for sending an abstract are 6 January and 1 February respectively: “Captivating Criminality. Crime Fiction, Darkness and Desire” Conference, Bath Spa University and Crime Studies Network (24-26 April 2014); and “Evil Incarnate: Manifestations of Villains and Villainy“, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland (11-13 July).

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Disfunctional Female Detectives: the Exception or the Norm?

Barbara Pezzotti   ACIS

I have recently been watching the Danish/Swedish TV series “The Bridge” which, like many other hundreds of thousands of people in the world, I am enjoying very much. However, I can’t help but being a little annoyed by the female protagonist, who, like many other fictional female detectives nowadays, is disfunctional. Actually, in “The Bridge” case, very, very disfunctional. The Swedish detective Saga, who shows an extreme lack of empathy towards colleagues, witnesses, victims and whoever is involved in her investigations and life, is in good company.

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The global circulation of crime fiction: The case of Gianluca Carofiglio

Brigid Maher   La Trobe University

Gianrico Carofiglio

Gianrico Carofiglio

Crime fiction – what it is or is not, who reads it, how it circulates – was the focus of a conference hosted earlier this month by Leeds University and the Crime Studies Network. Papers, keynote addresses and panel discussions explored the theme “Retold, Resold, Transformed: Crime Fiction in the Modern Era”.

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Scerbanenco, new translation welcome

Barbara Pezzotti   ACIS

I was very pleased to know that a new translation into English of Giorgio Scerbanenco’s “Traditori di tutti” (1966) has finally appeared this year. Published under the title of “Betrayal” by Hersilia Press, this new translation by Howard Curtis finally does justice to Scerbanenco’s distinctive style and (after more than forty years) re-introduces  a masterpiece of Italian crime fiction to an English-speaking audience. When they first appeared in the 1960s, the adventures of Duca Lamberti, a former doctor struck off the register and imprisoned for practising euthanasia, captured first the attention and then the devotion of a large number of crime fiction readers in Italy.

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Translating crime fiction with Carlo Lucarelli

Brigid Maher   La Trobe University

Carlo Lucarelli chats with some of the Winter School participants

Carlo Lucarelli chats with some of the Winter School participants

At the end of June a group of group of translators, scholars, and students of translation had the opportunity to meet and work with renowned giallista Carlo Lucarelli as part of Murder and Mayhem in Translation, a literary translation winter school hosted by Monash University. The theme of the Winter School was crime fiction, and who better to walk (and talk) us through the many challenges and delights of this genre, and its translation, than Lucarelli, creator of Commissario De Luca, Ispettore Coliandro, and Ispettore Grazia De Negro, and host of the television series Blu notte, in which he investigates and narrates the real-life crimes, plots and conspiracies of contemporary Italy.

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International Crime Fiction Conference in Galway/2

Barbara Pezzotti   ACIS

At the “Gender and Sexuality in the Crime Genre” conference just finished in Galway, I attended a very interesting keynote address by Lisa Downing (University of Birmingham) entitled “Romancing the Cannibal: Genre and Gender Trouble in Thomas Harris’s “Hannibal” (1999). In her speech, Downing describes the character of Hannibal the Cannibal as “the poster-boy” of the exceptional murder and the most celebrated fictional serial killer.  According to this scholar, in a “postmodern decadent text” Hannibal embodies the “consumer habits of late capitalism”. She also highlights an evolution in the character from previous novels of the series and comments on the reaction of the readers to a more humanized Hannibal.

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