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URBANST 27Q: Sophomore Seminar: Three Detectives, Three Cities

This seminar will analyze the social reality of three historic cities (London in the 1880s and 90s, San Francisco in the 1920s and 30s, and contemporary Shanghai) through the prism of popular crime fiction featuring three great literary detectives (Arthur Conan Doyle¿s Sherlock Holmes, Dashiell Hammett¿s Sam Spade, and Qiu Xiaolong¿s Chief Inspector Chen). As a student in this course, you will explore why crime fiction is so popular, why the fear of crime is so much a part of modern urban culture, and why the police detective and the private investigator have become iconic code heroes of pulp fiction, movies, TV shows, and even video games. If you take this class, you will have the opportunity to write a paper and present your research on one of the classic literary detectives or on one of today¿s related manifestations of the same impulse in mass-market tales of superheroes, vampires, and the zombie apocalypse.
Terms: Win | Units: 3 | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
Instructors: Stout, F. (PI)
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