Elementary My Dear...The Modern International Detective Tale

Malcolm Compitello
MONDAYS 9:00 a.m. until noon
June 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, 2014
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Elementary My Dear...The Modern International Detective Tale

Summer 2014
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9:00 a.m. until noon
June 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, 2014


Main Campus



The detective tale, born of the work of Edgar Alan Poe and altered by Dashiell Hammett,  evolved over time in the hands of international masters such as Jorge Luis Borges, Manuel Vázquez Montalbán, Andrea Camilleri, and Donna Leon. Our examination helps identify the qualities that provide this genre with its enduring allure, and explores how modern practitioners play with the form and adapt it to the writer’s needs in ways that continue to fuel reader interest. Through the reading of the required primary texts and important recommended secondary texts and through the seminar's investigation of the genre we will come to a new appreciation of how the most representative of formulaic fiction broke out of its mold and garnered wide critical appreciation and the loyalty of millions of readers worldwide.

Required Reading: 

  • Vazquez Montalban, Manuel. Southern Seas. Trans. Patrick Camiller. Melville International Crime, 2012. ISBN: 1612191177.
  • Camilleri, Andrea. The Terra-Cotta Dog. Trans. Stephen Sartarelli. Penguin Books, 2005. ISBN: 0142004723.
  • Leon, Donna. Death at La Fenice. Harper Perennial, 2004. ISBN: 006074068X.

Course Registration

Meet Your Professor

Professor and Program Director
Department of Spanish and Portuguese, Humanities Seminars Program

MALCOLM ALAN COMPITELLO is Professor of Spanish and Director of the Humanities Seminars Program. He has authored four books and numerous essays on Hispanic literatures and cultures, especially written and visual forms of narration. He is the Executive Editor of the Arizona Journal of Hispanic Cultural Studies and serves on the editorial boards of a number of publications in the area of Hispanic Studies.


Poetry Center
Dorothy Rubel Room
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Tucson, AZ 85721
United States
Located on the SE corner of Helen Street and Vine Avenue, one block north of Speedway and three blocks west of Campbell Ave.

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