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Not clean, not well-lit - Raymond Chandler in the light of Joseph Conrad and Ernest Hemingway
2003 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year))Student thesis
Abstract [en]

Most academic critics have seen Raymond Chandler as affiliated with the hard-boiled school of detective fiction. Although his novels are excellent stylistic examples of the detective genre, Chandler’s characters and themes have had to endure the assumption that they are similarly defined. This essay aims to be a re-evaluation of Chandler’s work that will enrich our knowledge of both his technique and themes, which will in turn point him out as the nuanced and rich novelist he is. The essay places Chandler’s work in the light of Joseph Conrad and Ernest Hemingway, two well-established authors concerned with similar themes to both each other and Chandler. This approach shows how Chandler’s use of theme and content works intertextually with Conrad and Hemingway. The interaction between the works is to be seen in the field of characterization, where Chandler critiques and overturns Conrad’s Charlie Marlow and his aspiration towards the truth. Chandler also overturns the character of Hemingway as he shows that this is a man who, despite the impression of seeming to fit in, is out of place in Marlowe’s Los Angeles. In addition, Chandler critiques and even parodies Hemingway’s notion of the clean and the well-lighted by showing that his protagonist, Philip Marlowe, has no belief in the romantic notion of Hemingway’s sanctuary against darkness. Marlowe has become part of both the darkness and the nastiness. The primary sources chosen as the basis for this examination are Chandler’s The Big Sleep, Farewell, My Lovely and a few of the short-stories collected in Killer in the Rain. These have been viewed in comparison and contrast to Conrad’s Heart of Darkness and a number of Hemingway’s short stories from In Our Time, and also “The Killers” and “A Clean, Well-Lighted Place”.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2003. , 28 p.
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-53894Local ID: ENG D-13OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-53894DiVA: diva2:1102454
Subject / course
English
Available from: 2017-05-29 Created: 2017-05-29

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
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More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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