Office of Undergraduate Research

The Origins of the Modern Detective Novel in Spain

One of the basic characteristics of detective fiction in Spain is a criticism of authority (in particular the police and government); obviously, such was not permitted under the dictatorship of Franco (1936-1975). Recently, however, this type of novel has become increasingly popularized with authors such as Vazquez-Montalban and Perez-Reverte obtaining an international audience of unprecedented scale.The present research, then, examines the roots of Spanish detective fiction, which reaches reaches back to the 20th-century, the 19th-century, and even earlier. The projected outcome is a book with the title of "The Origins of the Modern Detective Novel in Spain," with a chapter devoted to each of the major influences: Naturalism, the esperpento, tremendismo, post-modernismo, and other influences.

Tasks and responsibilities:

Student tasks will involve searching the MLA Bibliography Index, as well as other sources (including the bibliographies of articles found and/or information the professor currently has), tracking down articles, books, reviews, etc., and learning to discuss academically the cause/effect and influences of/over the various literary movements prior to, and including, the Spanish detective novel. The student will obtain (for the professor) a copy of the materials and write a 100 word (maximum) synthesis/abstract of the essay. Additional research as needed--such as obtaining/reading/summarizing sources found by the professor or arising from the student's research--may be requested.