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To think lots of crime thrillers fetishise violence against women?

(37 Posts)
moutonfou Thu 12-Oct-17 08:16:16

Every so often I fancy reading a good old crime/mystery thriller so have a browse through them and feel really worried by what I see. Most of them seem to be really quite dark and graphic and what's more, have a tendency to almost fetishise violence against women. Gone are the days of Agatha Christie and someone bumping off their aunt for the inheritance. There's always a 'calculating serial killer' playing a 'cat and mouse game' with his usually exclusively female victims, whose torrid last hours we are usually 'treated' to in overly gruesome detail. The killer usually has some cute quirk like killing exclusively blonde women, because he was ridiculed by a blonde woman at school (i.e. it's all her fault).

Is it just me who doesn't want to read this stuff? There's enough violence towards women in the real world, and yes there's absolutely a need to explore that including in books, but I don't think unpleasantly graphic stories about serial killers with a blonde fetish really contribute to that?

WhoWants2Know Thu 12-Oct-17 08:18:59

I agree. The supermarket bookshelves seem to be filled with books in which women are killed or their children are abducted. It's creepy.

redexpat Thu 12-Oct-17 08:24:41

Ive not thought about it before but now you mention it, yrs i see your point. Im basing this on CSI. You dont get so much of it on lewis or midsummer murders.

CaoNiMartacus Thu 12-Oct-17 08:30:29

I agree.

One of my areas of research is the effect of popular/middlebrow culture on shaping zeitgeist and ultimately leading to changes in legislation. For this reason, I find it quite frightening.

WholeOrDiced Thu 12-Oct-17 08:30:32

Sometimes when I read crime/thriller books I end up thinking that it's a creepy amount of detail and that someone's getting off on that. I think a lot of popular culture today is the same though, if women aren't being murdered/raped, they're calculating sluts after you for your money. That is, if they're not just airheads in the background of a music video. Multiple layers but I don't think anyone ever sees women as people with emotional depth, feeling or differences. Other than the general formula of slut vs money grabber vs mother character (who is always cleaning up a mans messes in one way or another). Women can never just be.
It's unfortunate, sorry for the tangent and if I haven't explained myself well. English is my 2nd language

PinkSparklyPussyCat Thu 12-Oct-17 08:37:46

YANBU but I do love a good crime thriller so I read them anyway. I'm not sure what else I would read if I didn't.

blueshoes Thu 12-Oct-17 08:38:02

Yes. And many of the authors are women as well.

I used to read a lot of Patricia Cornwell and other female crime writers of that genre. I don't touch the stuff now. What with the stories coming out of ISIS, I don't need to read fiction. Val McDermid and Mo Hayder were quite horrific. Lurid accounts of fetishized violence against women is through the roof.

Hellywelly10 Thu 12-Oct-17 08:50:36

I agree violence against women is portrayed as a form on entertainment regularly. I do think exposure to such imagery normalises it. Makes me feel very uncomfortable. Now I just listen to the archers!

IfYouGoDownToTheWoodsToday Thu 12-Oct-17 08:55:04

I agree and I hate it. It happens so much in tv and film too.

Theses people are perpetuaing the image of women as sex objects only there for tittalation. They have a similar mond set to HW imo.

It needs to stop.

GetYourHandsOffMyUnicorn Thu 12-Oct-17 08:55:52

I guess because that's what sells.

Ilovetolurk Thu 12-Oct-17 08:57:31

I agree

The trailer on the radio for the Snowman film is utterly appalling too

KERALA1 Thu 12-Oct-17 08:58:23

Subjected to the trailer for that Snowman film. Young women being pursued and murdered in the snow. WTAF

HandbagKrabby Thu 12-Oct-17 08:59:02

Absolutely. It's like it can't be a crime if it hasn't got a dead, naked, attractive women at the end of it. It feels like it sets the narrative that in a way, women are there to be prey.

IfYouGoDownToTheWoodsToday Thu 12-Oct-17 08:59:42

I saw the trailer for Snowman at the cinema on Monday night. It's vile.

IfYouGoDownToTheWoodsToday Thu 12-Oct-17 09:01:36

"I guess because that's what sells"

That's no excuse. Lots of things sell, like child abuse on the internet and heroin. Doesn't mean it should happen.

BringMeTea Thu 12-Oct-17 09:03:07

YANBU. It's rather depressing. Bring back the country house murder mystery!

ringle Thu 12-Oct-17 09:04:40

yanbu sad

YogaDrone Thu 12-Oct-17 09:07:24

As a genre murder mystery is mainly read by women. I find this odd given how much violence against women there is in these novels. However, one could say that it simply mirrors real life, i.e. most murderers are male and most victims are female.

I haven't seen the Snowman trailer. Is this an adaptation of the Jo Nesbo novel?

RoderickRules Thu 12-Oct-17 09:10:31

I was just talking about this yesterday.
Don't bother with tv anymore.
Learned behaviour is evidenced, people do see things and copy them.
What kind of 'entertainment' is this?
Sex, horror, violence.


Ifitquackslikeaduck Thu 12-Oct-17 09:16:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LindyHemming Thu 12-Oct-17 09:17:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MiriAmmerman Thu 12-Oct-17 09:22:07

YANBU - I don’t like it either. I feel that there’s an element of glamorisation which I can’t bear sad

In terms of TV, I would rather watch Morse, Lewis, or Midsomer Murders than something like CSI because they feel more innocent. When it comes to novels, I tend to prefer espionage (Le Carré etc) because I just don’t want gruesome serial killings, even though I love to be gripped by a genuinely suspenseful novel.

Also like CJ Sansom’s Shardlake novels (historical murder mysteries), although the first four are much better than nos. 5 and 6.

knottybeams Thu 12-Oct-17 09:22:38

I like the Chris Brookmyre thrillers. Complicated mysteries but with a bit more originality of the actual crimes etc. Last one I read was computer hacking/murder(of bloke) /attempted framing of protagonists.

MiriAmmerman Thu 12-Oct-17 09:25:09

Saw The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo film for the first time the other day (bit behind the times chez Ammerman grin) - it was the Swedish version with Noomi Rapace. Felt physically sick throughout. Will not be reading any of the books, ever.

OhThisbloodyComputer Thu 12-Oct-17 09:27:58

I agree with OP.

TV is even worse.

Why are writers so enthusiastic about dreaming up ways for women to die horribly?

On TV there's a disturbing new trend where they fantasise about child killers.

It's all so that the author/hero of the piece can moralise about how terrible certain sections of humanity are.

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