The Rise of True Crime: 20th Century Murder and American Popular Culture (and the delivery system missed)
An interesting read and a few tiny, hand-held examples the author missed. Jean Murley discusses the rise of "true crime" as a form of entertainment in a scholarly but readable manner. At least I read it all, and my attention span lasts as long as a grape fizzie in warm water. From pulp magazines in the 30's to websites trading rumors circling around the latest "missing white woman of the week" a very nice survey of media channels through history clamoring for the lurid market. You HAVE to love a book with the phrase "incendiary ambulance-chasing pseudojournalist Nancy Grace..." The trading cards date to the 1930's, a fabulous set of 240 true crime cards, each with the thrilling exploits of a lawman fighting a gunsel...and like it should be, the good guys always win. Book is linked at right.
Set of G-Men and Heroes of the Law Trading Cards, c. 1936. Collection Jim Linderman