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Murder Most Foul: The Killer and the American Gothic Imagination   Karen Halttunen

Murder Most Foul: The Killer and the American Gothic Imagination

145x220 340 страниц. 1998 год.
Harvard University Press
Confronting murder in the newspaper, on screen, and in sensational trials, we often feel the killer is fundamentally incomprehensible and morally alien. But this was not always the popular response to murder. In "Murder Most Foul", Karen Halttunen explores the changing view of murder from early New England sermons read at the public execution of murderers, through the nineteenth century, when secular and sensational accounts replaced the sacred treatment of the crime, to today's true crime literature and tabloid reports. The early narratives were shaped by a strong belief in original sin and spiritual redemption, by the idea that all murders were natural manifestations of the innate depravity of humankind. In a dramatic departure from that view, the Gothic imagination - with its central conventions of the fundamental horror and mystery of the crime - seized upon the murderer as a moral monster, separated from the normal majority by an impassable gulf. Halttunen shows how this...
 
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