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Cover Art
Author Irwin, John T.

Title The mystery to a solution : Poe, Borges, and the analytic detective story / John T. Irwin.

Published Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, [1994]


Location Call No. Status
 UniM Bail  813.3 IRWI    AVAILABLE
Physical description xxiii, 482 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 453-464) and index.
Summary When Poe invented the analytic detective genre in the 1840s with the three Dupin stories, his underlying project was to examine the very nature of self-consciousness. But the tradition of detective fiction these stories inspired would draw on only the most superficial aspects of his work. One hundred years after Poe, however, Borges would reinterpret the genre with three detective stories of his own and revive Poe's original, ambitious intention to analyze "the analytic power". In The Mystery to a Solution, John Irwin brilliantly examines the deeper significance of the genre Poe created and the meaning of Borges's efforts to "double" its origin. Using a methodology that combines history, literary history, and practical and speculative criticism, Irwin pursues the issues underlying the detective genre into areas as various as the history of mathematics, classical mythology, the double-mirror structure of self-consciousness, handedness, the anthropology of Evans and Frazer, the structure of chess, automata, the mind-body problem, the etymology of labyrinth, and scores of other topics. Irwin honors the aesthetic impact of the genre he discusses by mirroring in his study the dynamics of a detective story - the uncovering of mysteries, the accumulation of evidence, the tracing of clues, and the final solution that ties it all together.
Subject Poe, Edgar Allan, 1809-1849 -- Fictional works.
Borges, Jorge Luis, 1899-1986 -- Fictional works.
Detective and mystery stories -- History and criticism -- Theory, etc.
Comparative literature -- American and Argentine.
Comparative literature -- Argentine and American.
Fiction -- Technique.
ISBN 0801846501 (hc : acid-free paper)
0801854660 (paperback: acid-free paper)