Gender and Sexuality in Contemporary Detective Fiction

full name / name of organization: 
Julie H. Kim / Northeastern Illinois University
contact email: 

Call for papers for a collection of essays for a volume tentatively titled Gender and Sexuality in Contemporary Detective Fiction.

I am looking to put together 10-12 essays (which I will edit and introduce) with the following sub-categories:

1) Gender power dynamics:
This section might study power dynamics between male-female investigating teams/pairs. This section would also address meaningful differences between the treatment of a primary series featuring a male detective and a secondary series featuring a female detective written by the same author (for example, P.D. James's series on Adam Dalgliesh and on Cordelia Gray).

2) Ethnic minority women detectives:
This section might consider, for instance, the possible conflict between one's gender and ethnic identities in detecting.

3) "Radical" feminist politics in detective fiction:
This section might consider the depiction of progressive feminist politics within a genre that appears, on some levels, to be fairly conservative. This section might include--but is certainly not limited to--examinations of lesbian detectives as well.

4) Sex and sexuality in contemporary detective fiction:
This section will look at the increasingly graphic and sometimes troubling depiction of sex and sexuality in popular/mainstream detective fiction.

Right now, the collection is concentrating on works/series written by British and American women. However, this focus might change if particularly compelling abstracts are submitted with a different focus.

Please submit an abstract of 250 words by September 15, 2010 to

Julie H. Kim
Professor of English
Northeastern Illinois University