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Murdering Masculinities: Fantasies of Gender and Violence in the American Crime Novel
Murdering Masculinities: Fantasies of Gender and Violence in the American Crime Novel
Murdering Masculinities: Fantasies of Gender and Violence in the American Crime Novel
  • Price: $19.00
  • Sale Price: $2.95
  • Written by: Greg Forter
  • Publisher: NYU Press
  • ISBN: 0-8147-2691-7
  • Copyright: 2000
  • Number of Pages: 224
  • Medium: Paperback
  • Shipping Weight: 0.00 Pounds
Product Description
for Murdering Masculinities: Fantasies of Gender and Violence in the American Crime Novel

"Sumptuous, elegant, nuanced, and accessible, Greg Forter's Murdering Masculinities helps us remember what language can do. But Forter minces more than words in this provocative new book. He offers a transformative reading of American crime fiction, arguing that it is not to high modernism that we should look for the reinvention of gender, but rather to the 'low' works of authors like James Cain, Chester Himes, Dashiell Hammett, Jim Thompson, and William Faulkner." --Kaja Silverman, University of California, Berkeley

Murdering Masculinities offers a provocative new reading of crime fiction that changes the way we think about masculinity, psychoanalytic theory, and the potentials of popular fiction. Greg Forter contends that the American crime novel is a more aesthetically complex and politically progressive form than has generally been assumed. While there are many crime novels that celebrate male power and a psychically invulnerable male self, he focuses instead on a subtradition that seeks instead to murder masculinity--to encourage male readers and characters alike to embrace desires for self-dissolution that conventional masculinity disavows as feminine.

These books ask men to experience dissolution in disturbingly immediate ways. Unlike many high-cultural texts--which seek aesthetically to redeem the self's ruins--and psychoanalytic texts--which seek to master them theoretically--they make men live forms of male abjection that are a necessary negative prerequisite to feminist transformation.

Forter demonstrates these arguments through sensuously detailed close readings. In doing so, he models a new kind of psychoanalytic criticism in which the will to theoretical mastery is tempered by the implicative gestures of popular aesthetic forms.

About the Author
of Murdering Masculinities: Fantasies of Gender and Violence in the American Crime Novel
Greg Forter teaches American literature at the University of South Carolina
Murdering Masculinities: Fantasies of Gender and Violence in the American Crime Novel
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