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Giorgio Scerbanenco

Urban Space, Violence and Gender Identity in Post-War Italian Crime Fiction

Series:

Marco Paoli

The works of Giorgio Scerbanenco repeatedly articulate and explore the implications of new forms of criminality that emerged in Italy’s post-war transformation towards its «economic miracle». An indepth analysis of Scerbanenco’s Duca Lamberti series constitutes the critical focus of this study, and in particular the psychological resonances of the role played by the author’s controversial representation of the urban space, its violence, (in)justice and gender roles. In what way do these elements heighten and/or exaggerate the nature of the criminal acts and the reader’s experience? This study therefore investigates a reader’s potential response to the content, the settings, and, above all, the characters Scerbanenco portrays in these four novels.

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Acknowledgements ............................................................................. 9 Preface by Cecilia Scerbanenco ....................................................... 11 Introduction ........................................................................................ 15 Crime Fiction and the Question of Literary Genre ................... 16 Italian Crime Fiction from its Origins to the 1960s ................... 23 Giorgio Scerbanenco: From giallo to noir .................................... 36 The Arthur Jelling series ................................................................ 46 Evolution of Crime in Italy’s Post-war Period .......................... 55 The Duca Lamberti series Chapter 1. Urban Environments and Crime ................................ 81 Criminal Metamorphoses in the Urban Space .......................... 87 Urban Space through Symbols .................................................. 101 Chapter 2. Violence, Justice and Moral (Dis)Orientation ....... 123 Violence as a Principle for Moral Evaluation .......................... 125 Moral (Dis)Orientation: The Justifiable Act of Violence .......... 143 Chapter 3. Female Characters and Gender Identity ................. 163 Controlled Unconventional Female Characters ...................... 169 The Economic Miracle: a Collective Cultural Trauma ........... 179 Conclusion ......................................................................................... 193 Appendix ........................................................................................... 201 Bibliography ..................................................................................... 205 Index ................................................................................................... 235

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