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Title: Bloody Women: A critical-creative examination of how female protagonists have transformed contemporary Scottish and Nordic crime fiction
Author(s): Hill, Lorna
Supervisor(s): Bell, Liam
Squires, Claire
Keywords: women
crime fiction
female protagonists
Val McDermid
Denise Mina
Lin Anderson
Anna Smith
Liza Marklund
domestic abuse
human trafficking
Issue Date: 29-Nov-2017
Publisher: University of Stirling
Citation: Journal of American, British & Canadian Studies Bloody Women: How Female Authors Have Transformed the Scottish Contemporary Crime Fiction Genre (June 2017)
Abstract: This study will explore the role of female authors and their female protagonists in contemporary Scottish and Nordic crime fiction. Authors including Val McDermid, Denise Mina, Lin Anderson and Liza Marklund are just a few of the women who have challenged the expectation of gender in the crime fiction genre. By setting their novels in contemporary society, they reflect a range of social and political issues through the lens of a female protagonist. By closely examining the female characters, all journalists, in Val McDermid’s Lindsay Gordon series; Denise Mina’s Paddy Meehan series; Anna Smith’s books about Rosie Gilmour; and Liza Marklund’s books about Annika Bengzton, I explore the issue of gender through these writers’ perspectives and also draw parallels between their societies. I document the influence of these writers on my own practice-based research, a novel, The Invisible Chains, set in post-Referendum Scotland. The thesis will examine and define the role of the female protagonist, offer a feminist reading of contemporary crime fiction, and investigate how the rise of human trafficking, the problem of domestic abuse in Scotland and society’s changing attitudes and values are reflected in contemporary crime novels, before discussing the narrative structures and techniques employed in the writing of The Invisible Chains. This novel allows us to consider the role of women in a contemporary and progressive society where women hold many senior positions in public life and examine whether they manage successfully to challenge traditional patriarchal hierarchies. The narrative is split between journalist Megan Ross, The Girl, a victim of human trafficking, and Trudy, who is being domestically abused, thus pulling together the themes of the critical genesis in the creative work. By focusing on the protagonist, the victims and raising awareness of human trafficking and domestic abuse, The Invisible Chains, an original creative work, reflects a contemporary society’s changing attitudes, problems and values.
Type: Thesis or Dissertation

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Bloody Women - FINAL VERSION MAY 2018.pdfSubmitted for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Creative Writing3.64 MBAdobe PDFView/Open

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