The humanistic aspect of Alexander McCall Smith’s African detective fiction

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Abstract

The text presents some of the unusual features of Alexander McCall Smith’s popular African detective stories, in which cultural elements convey humanity and thus lower tension, the characteristic sign of detective fiction. Culture, in particular the African collectivist culture included in the core of these stories, creates a milieu that enables the writer to avoid murders, which are usually basic conflict-conveying vehicles in this genre. Although McCall Smith’s African books contain the conventional formal elements of detective stories, they also display a very low level of tension together with other peculiarities. This text tries to compare the structure and elements of classic detective stories with those from McCall Smith’s books to disclose their true essence.

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Ars Aeterna

Literary Studies and Humanity

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SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.102

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