". . . But the past does not exist independently from the present. Indeed, the past is only past because there is a present, just as I can point to something over there only because I am here. But nothing is inherently over there or here. In that sense, the past has no content. The past -- or more accurately, pastness -- is a position. Thus, in no way can we identify the past as past." p. 15

". . . But we may want to keep in mind that deeds and words are not as distinguishable as often we presume. History does not belong only to its narrators, professional or amateur. While some of us debate what history is or was, others take it into their own hands." p. 153

Silencing the Past: Power and the Production of History (1995) by Michel-Rolph Trouillot

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Crime Fiction Is Always About the Past

Irish crime fiction writer, Brian McGilloway, nailed it perfectly, when interviewed by the UK Guardian, about the crime fiction set in Northern Ireland:

" ...  issues of right and wrong and how the past impacts on the present.
"Crime fiction is always about the past: it begins with a dead body and the detective has to go back to work out what happened. The whole genre is about starting at a point in time and then tracing back to work out where it all went wrong."

This explains why crime fiction, like historical fiction a genre with a vast variety of sub-genres, including crime investigators from all eras, appeals to so many historians. I had noticed quite some ago that crime fiction is sort of universal genre solvent -- it dissolves successfully into every other form of fiction there is, and this must be why.

Thank you Mr. McGillowy!

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