David Schmid

David Schmid >

37
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Mystery Fiction’s Secret Formula
Episode 1 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Delve into the controversial viewpoints on what the first true mystery novel was, study important components of early mysteries and writers, including Poe, Doyle, and Christie - and why their work continues to influence modern day stories. Then, examine the…
The Detective Is Born
Episode 2 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Usually flawed, quite often brilliant, and sometimes not even aware of their role, the dectective is a staple of the genre. This lecture will scrutinize the many ways the detective has been portrayed across stories and series over time, revealing…
Nordic Noir
Episode 25 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
The last decade has seen Nordic noir enter the American mainstream, though they have been popular in their homeland for half a century. Professor Schmid takes you through this progressive form of mystery and suspense fiction, showing how many examples…
The Criminal
Episode 3 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
On the other end of the spectrum from the detective, we find the criminal. Equally important to the success of the story, explore a fascinating cast of notorious characters who have survived through the annals of time. Spend this lecture…
The Femme Fatale
Episode 14 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
One of the most iconic characters in mystery is that of the femme fatale. Uncover the many iterations of this definitive character and the different approaches writers have used to present the femme fatale, while always staying true to the…
African American Mysteries
Episode 13 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Professor Schmid challenges the stereotypical lack of diversity in most mystery and suspense fiction by presenting the contribution that writers from other races and ethnicities have made to the genre. By investigating both black writers and black characters, you'll see…
Murder in Cozy Places
Episode 9 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
As society changed, and the grim story lines of mystery and suspense more often reflected harsh reality, a new type of novel emerged to keep the audience shaken. Authors began springing shocking situations in what were typically considered "safe" environments:…
Return of the Classic Detective
Episode 10 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Revisit the role of the detective through the lens of the Golden Age of fiction, including the hard-boiled crime fiction of the early 20th century. Examine how social influences such as prohibition and the mafia impacted this subgenre. Explore how…
The Locked Room
Episode 7 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Having reviewed the essential components of a successful mystery, Professor Schmid moves to the various subgenres of mystery and suspense, starting with the locked-room stories popular during the Victorian age. Look at how these puzzle-like stories are often dismissed due…
The European Mystery Tradition
Episode 24 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Inheriting the legacy of mystery and suspense from American writers, Europe took the genre far more seriously. Travel through France, Germany, Italy, and Spain to see how the genre manages to address location-specific issues and cultures, while maintaining the core…
The Private Eye Opens
Episode 12 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Often confused with "the detective," the private eye is different from the classical version of the detective in terms of motivation, methods, lifestyle, and beliefs, and is the major contribution of American hard-boiled fiction. Comparing a vast selection of stories…
Historical Mysteries
Episode 29 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Explore how many writers take the foundational elements of mystery and suspense and move them to earlier periods of history, often mixing true events and historical facts with fictional characters or situations. Professor Schmid introduces you to two types of…
Spies, Thrillers, and Conspiracies
Episode 30 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Start this section by comparing and contrasting mystery and suspense genres through the lens of realism and how spy and conspiracy suspense novels often take realism one step further by incorporating real world geopolitical and global concerns to enhance verisimilitude.…
The Sidekick
Episode 4 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Where would a Sherlock be without a Watson? The story of the sidekick isn't required in a successful mystery but they remain pivotal and entertaining characters who deserve their own deep dive. Follow the diverse cast that fulfilled the many…
Police as Protagonist
Episode 22 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
The shift of the role of police from a passive, outside observer to an active participant and even protagonists, came about with the emergence of the police procedural. Journeying from Maigret to Dragnet, and exploring authors such as Georges Simenon…
The Lady Detective
Episode 17 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
From complicated clients to lusty love interests, from sprightly sidekick to detail-oriented detectives, women have always played a role in mystery and suspense fiction. Professor Schmid introduces you to female detectives in literature through time and examines how even at…
Psychopaths and Mind Hunters
Episode 20 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
In the last century, with the increased interest and research into how our minds work, the concept of "whydunit" became just as intriguing as the concept of "whodunit." Once authors began to reverse the traditional methods of mystery by revealing…
The City Tests the Detective
Episode 11 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
Professor Schmid reveals how the city is often portrayed as more than merely a backdrop, but rather as a character, as much so as the detective, sidekick, or criminal. Chaos, noise, pollution, crowds, danger, traffic - each of these traits…
Courtroom Drama
Episode 33 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
A majority of mysteries conclude as soon as the crime is solved; once a criminal was apprehended, there was no motivation to read further. Professor Schmid discusses how the genre moved beyond this and court procedurals became not just a…
Female-Centered Mystery and Suspense
Episode 31 of The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction
In this lecture, women step out of the three traditional roles they are typically reduced to in the mystery and suspense genre: victim, femme fatale, or detective. By examining a variety of books over the last century, Professor Schmid looks…