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Given -- 1- Art 2- Crime : Modernity, Murder and Mass Culture, Paperback / softback Book

Given -- 1- Art 2- Crime : Modernity, Murder and Mass Culture Paperback / softback


Investigates links between avant-garde art and the aesthetics of crime in order to bridge the gap between high modernism and mass culture, as emblematised by tabloid reports of unsolved crimes.

Throughout Jean-Michel Rabate is concerned with two key questions: what is it that we enjoy when we read murder stories? and what has modern art to say about murder? Indeed, Rabate compels us to consider whether art itself is a form of murder.

The book begins with Marcel Duchamps fascination for trivia and found objects conjoined with his iconoclasm as an anti-artist.

The visual parallels between the naked woman at the centre of his final work, Etant Donnes, and a young woman who had been murdered in Los Angeles in January 1947, provides the specific point of departure.

The text moves onward to Steven Hodel, the 'Black Dahlia' murder; Walter Benjamins description of Eugene Atgets famous photographs of deserted Paris streets as presenting the scene of the crime; and Ralph Roffs 1997 exhibition, which implied that modern art is indissociable from forensic gaze and a detectives outlook, a view first advanced by Edgar Allan Poe.


  • Format: Paperback / softback
  • Pages: 228 pages
  • Publisher: Sussex Academic Press
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Cultural studies
  • ISBN: 9781845191122

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