Monday, March 25, 2024

2024 Dove awardee: Barry Forshaw.

The 2024 recipient of the George N. Dove Award for contributions to the serious study of mystery, detective, and crime fiction is British author, editor of Crime Time magazine, essayist, journalist, and commentator Barry Forshaw. The Dove Award, named for mystery fiction scholar George N. Dove, is presented by the Detective/Mystery Caucus of the Popular Culture Association; the chair of the Dove Award Committee is Rachel Schaffer (Montana State University Billings). Past Dove recipients include Frankie Y. Bailey (University at Albany, SUNY), Martin Edwards, Douglas G. Greene, P. D. James, Christine Jackson, H. R. F. Keating, Maureen Reddy (Rhode Island College), Janet Rudolph, J. K. Van Dover (Lincoln University), and yours truly.

Monday, March 18, 2024

CFP, Clues Teaching Forum: Crime Fiction in the Multilingual Classroom.

Crime fiction sheds a light on different cultures and societies, as well as challenges assumptions about gender, class, race, and ethnicity. By luring students into thinking that popular fiction is an easy read, an increasing number of language teachers have used crime fiction to teach both foreign languages and cultures. At the same time, crime fiction instructors have expanded their syllabi to include texts in translation that tackle important issues such as gender violence, environmental concerns, and racism. This Clues Teaching Forum invites short essays that address the following questions: 

  • How has multilingualism shaped a personal approach to the teaching of crime fiction? 
  • What are the challenges of teaching a text in the original language? 
  • What are the challenges in using a text in translation? 
  • How are the expectations of multilingual students accommodated? 
  • What mystery/detective/crime works have been successful in representing a society and a culture or in effectively teaching a second language? 
  • Has an instructor elected to no longer teach certain texts or to teach certain texts differently? 

We are interested in case studies related to teaching: 

  • Texts in the original language in language classes 
  • Texts in translation 
  • Crime shows with subtitles
  • Classes with multilingual students 
  • Multilingualism within texts 

Contributions of 750 to 1,000 words are sought for vol. 43, no. 1 (2025). Accounts from all classroom spaces (high schools, postsecondary institutions, prisons, etc.) and instructors at all stages of their careers are welcome. Submissions are due September 1, 2024. For more information or to submit essays, please contact Barbara Pezzotti (Barbara.pezzotti [at]

Monday, March 11, 2024

How does your garden grow?

Tim Brinkhof in JSTOR Daily discusses the role of gardening in mysteries with citations from Marta McDowell's new Gardening Can Be Murder, including mentions of such works as Agatha Christie's Sad Cypress and Stephanie Barron's The White Garden (involving Vita Sackville-West's famous gardens at Sissinghurst Castle) and the possibility that Wilkie Collins' Sergeant Cuff in The Moonstone is the first gardening detective.

Monday, March 04, 2024

Judge Dee rules.

China Daily discusses a new series on China's Central Television, Judge Dee's Mystery, which includes 17 cases based on the works of Dutch diplomat Robert van Gulik. Van Gulik had first translated an 18th-century Chinese work featuring Judge Dee (the real Judge Dee dates to the 7th century AD) and went on to write further cases for Judge Dee to solve.  Zhou Yiwei plays Judge Dee, and Li Yunliang directs the series.

China Daily reports that Netflix is picking up the series (Netflix lists it as debuting on March 16).