The Critical Response to Dashiell Hammett

The Critical Response to Dashiell Hammett

The Critical Response to Dashiell Hammett

The Critical Response to Dashiell Hammett


As one of the most popular American writers of detective fiction, Dashiell Hammett has drawn a diverse range of criticism. The author of The Dain Curse, The Maltese Falcon, The Thin Man, and other works, Hammett is now receiving additional attention from scholars who seek to reassess his writing. Spanning more than sixty years of critical response, this volume includes reviews of Hammett's novels from the 1920s and 1930s, as well as recent scholarly essays.


Critical Responses in Arts and Letters is designed to present a documentary history of highlights in the critical reception to the body of work of writers and artists and to individual works that are generally considered to be of major importance. the focus of each volume in this series is basically historical. the introductions to each volume are themselves brief histories of the critical response an author, artist, or individual work has received. This response is then further illustrated by reprinting a strong representation of the major critical reviews and articles which collectively have produced the author's, artist's, or work's critical reputation.

The scope of Critical Responses in Arts in Letters knows no chronological or geographical boundaries. Volumes under preparation include studies of individuals from around the world and in both contemporary and historical periods.

Each volume is the work of an individual editor, who surveys the entire body of criticism on a single author, artist, or work. the editor then selects the best material to depict the critical response received by an author or artist over his/her entire career. Documents produced by the author or the artist may also be included when the editor finds that they are necessary to a full understanding of the materials at hand. in circumstances where previous, isolated volumes of criticism on a particular individual or work exist, the editor carefully selects material that better reflects the nature and directions of the critical response over time.

In addition to the introduction and the documentary section, the editor of each volume is free to solicit new essays on areas that have not been adequately dealt with in previous criticism. Also, for volumes on living writers and artists, new interviews may be included, again at the discretion of the volume's editor. the volumes also provide a supplementary bibliography and are fully indexed.

While each volume in Critical Responses in Arts and Letters is unique, it is also hoped that in combination they form a useful, documentary history of the critical response to the arts, and one that can be easily and profitably employed by students and scholars.

Cameron Northouse . . .

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