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The Double, the Labyrinth and the Locked Room

Metaphors of Paradox in Crime Fiction and Film

Ilana Shiloh

Traditional detective fiction celebrates the victory of order and reason over the senseless violence of crime. Yet in spite of its apparent valorization of rationality, the detective genre has been associated from its inception with three paradoxical motifs – the double, the labyrinth and the locked room. Rational thought relies on binary oppositions, such as chaos and order, appearance and reality or truth and falsehood. Paradoxes subvert such customary distinctions, logically proving as true what we experientially know to be false.
The present book explores detective and crime-mystery fiction and film from the perspective of their entrenched metaphors of paradox. This new and intriguing angle yields fresh insights into a genre that has become one of the hallmarks of postmodernism.

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Index 183

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Index A Aarseth, Espen, 91, 95, 120, 147 Auster, Paul, 10, 18, 53, 54, 55, 56, 141, 158, 160-68 City of Glass, 3, 8, 155 Ghosts, 53, 159, 162, 163, 165 In the Country of Last Things, 120 The Locked Room, 53, 54, 142, 160. 164, 165 The New York Trilogy, 9, 170 Smoke, 141 author/ship, 55, 56, 75, 77, 86, 127, 128, 130, 140, 148, 160, 161, 165, 166 authority, 60, 62, 70, 71, 134, 145 autobiography, 77, 84, 134 B Barthes, Roland, 144, 146, 166 Beckett, Samuel, 82 Black Mask, 40 Bordwell, David, 79 Borges, Jorge Luis, 1, 9, 10, 56, 96, 97, 98, 99-103, 105, 108-10, 114, 120, 129, 142, 143, 157, 167, 169 The Aleph, 98, 100, 103 “Avatars of the Tortoise,” 99 “The Circular Ruins,” 100 “Death and the Compass,” 96, 97, 101- 6, 109, 110, 119, 169 “The Garden of Forking Paths,” 98, 101 “The House of Asterion,” 100 Labyrinths, 98, 99, 100, 101, 108, 140 “A New Refutation of Time,” 98, 101 “Partial Magic in the Quixote,” 100 “The Theologians,” 103 “Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis, Tertius,” 99, 101 Butler, Judith, 59, 65, 67 C Cabala, 100, 102-5, 107, 110, 169 Caillois, Roger, 11, 153, 171 Cain, James, 112 The Postman Always Rings Twice, 111, 112, 117, 171 Camus, Albert, 66, 67, 171 The Myth of Sisyphus, 46 The Outsider, 47, 65, 111, 112 See also existentialism Carr, John Dickson, 153, 154 See also locked room Chandler, Raymond, 3, 34, 40, 41, 43, 52,...

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