For the first time, Sisters in Crime has awarded grants to support scholars who are studying gender and diversity in crime fiction. These grants will cover up to $500 toward the purchase of books needed for research.
The four grant recipients are:
Jon Blandford – Reinvestigating Domestic Detective Fiction. Blanford, an assistant professor of English at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky, is conducting research on late nineteenth-century women writers of crime fiction with a domestic focus, which will be published in a history of American crime fiction to be published by Cambridge University Press.
Ellen Burton Harrington - The Rise of the American Woman Detective: Gender and Detective Genre in Green, Doyle, and Rinehart. An assistant professor of English at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Harrington is also contributing to the Cambridge history, with a focus on contextualizing the work of Anna Katharine Green and Mary Roberts Rinehart historically, examining how these authors influenced one another and anticipated the rise of the hard-boiled feminist detective.
Calvin McMillin – Yellow Noir: The Asian American Detective in American Popular Culture. McMillin, who recently received his PhD in literature from the University of California, Santa Cruz and is currently teaching writing at Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor, Michigan, is working on a book project that will be the first critical analysis of literary and cinematic detective stories featuring Asian Americans. This grant will particularly support his research on a chapter on contemporary Asian-American women crime writers.
Catherine Oliver - Ordeal by Access: Issues in the Classification and Cataloging of Crime Fiction. Oliver, an assistant professor and metadata and cataloging services librarian at Northern Michigan University in Marquette, Michigan, will be examining weaknesses in the rules for cataloging fiction which particularly influence the discoverability of genres traditionally associated with women. With a goal of presenting her research at the Popular Culture Association and publishing her findings, Oliver will outline some theoretical concepts and provide practical idea to improve discovery in library catalogs.
“These projects speak to Sisters in Crime’s mission, to promote the ongoing advancement, recognition and professional development of women crime writers,” according to Barbara Fister, board member and coordinator of an ongoing project to monitor the gender breakdown of book reviews. “We’re delighted to help these accomplished early-career scholars advance our understanding of women’s contribution to the genre.”