O Is for Outlaw Social Concerns

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An Unsuitable Genre for a Feminist?" is the title of Cora Kaplan's article in Women's Review discussing women writing detective fiction (1986). The question is a valid one, for the drive of detective fiction, the genre to which O Is for Outlaw belongs, is toward a goal that upholds the law and maintains or restores social order, and sees that justice is done. Subsequently, the detective novel tends toward a conservative ending in support of the status quo. Since this status quo favors the masculine, how, indeed, might women make use of the genre without perpetuating the patriarchal ideologies that underlie it?

Into the generic framework Sue Grafton inserts her central protagonist, Kinsey Millhone, a thirty-six-year-old female private investigator. But, can a woman's presence in what is conventionally thought of as a man's role, both in life and in literature, make any difference? Although Millhone's character stems...

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This section contains 1,086 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the O Is for Outlaw Short Guide
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O Is for Outlaw from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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