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On Murder Considered as One of the Fine Arts and Other Related Texts

3.71 of 5 stars 3.71  ·  rating details  ·  349 ratings  ·  20 reviews
This scarce antiquarian book is a selection from Kessinger Publishing's Legacy Reprint Series. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment to protecting, preserving, and promoting the world's literature. Kessinger ...more
Hardcover, 82 pages
Published May 23rd 2010 by Kessinger Publishing (first published 1827)
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Sam
This edition has all three of De Quincey's essays On Murder Considered as One of the Fine arts, which centre on the Ratcliffe Highway Murders by John Williams in the 1810s. The essays look at the murders from the murderer's point of view with a more objective stance than is often taken, looking at the more aesthetic side of the crime, one which is often overlooked and overshadowed by the sheer horror of such events and the sympathies for the victims involved. De Quincey manages to address the 'p ...more
Michele
This is a set of three papers that were initially published in Blackwood Magazine in the 1800s. It is a satirical and fictional look at the artistic qualities of a good murder. The letters describe a Club where members meet to discuss the various merits of murder and who should be considered a true artist and who should not. In these writings, DeQuincey discusses real-life murders including the Ratcliffe Highway Murders, which are epitomized as the most pure and beautiful example of the art of m ...more
Michelle Laird
I love De Quincey's work, but I think this is my favourite thus far. His satire is fabulous and often it is a challenge to weed the facts from the fiction. I also think the conclusions he draws are probably more relevant today than when he wrote them.

I couldn't help but notice a preoccupation with the number 12 which occurred throughout. I wonder if he was so fascinated by the Williams murders in particular because of the reoccurrence of the number 12. He frequently mentions that the second Will
...more
Jean
Este libro, que se compone de una conferencia dada en la Asociación de Conocedores del Asesinato, el autor hace un recorrido histórico desde los primeros crímenes de la humanidad, hasta los más atroces, situados en la Manchester del Siglo XIX.

Dificulta un poco la lectura el lenguaje “elegante” con que escribe y el abuso del latín, con lo que ciertamente quiere teñir con un tinte de glamour las actividades de la citada Asociación.

Según De Quincey, “el crimen es reprobable cuando se proyecta, per
...more
Kaycie
Most of this book was just...boring. And a bit too morbid for my taste. The first two essays "On murder as a fine art", especially, were hard to follow and enjoy for these reasons.

The "On knocking at the gates..." was really interesting, as was the last "on murder..." essay, due to the fact that both deeply explored not just the mind of a killer, but the psychology of the survivors. The in-depth look at these psychologies was both interesting and quite thrilling.

(view spoiler)
...more
Daniel Ausente
Aunque se nota que está escrito hace casi 200 años, esa también es una de sus virtudes. Texto crucial como alegato provocador del verdadero sentido del arte, en forma de irónica y falsa conferencia para un club del admiradores del crimen homicida como objeto estético. Ahí estriba toda su modernidad, ya que anticipa una visión del mal como espectáculo que hoy es frecuente en medios de comunicación y del mal como temática para la subversión artística. La parte final, el postcriptum, relata con gen ...more
Marjolein
In his essays "On Murder Considered as One of the Fine Arts" part one and two de Quincey strives to present the reader with a satire equal to Swift's "A Modest Proposal", as he wishes to make it clear to the reader that one should not relish in the murder of one's neighbor. However, in this he fails miserably. The essays are often hard to follow and are at times quite boring, since they do not present the same shocking images that Swift uses in order to create the desired impact.

The short story
...more
Alberto
Un 'clásico' citado en multitud de novelas policiacas, quizá lo mejor de la obra es la elección del título -'Del asesinato considerado como una de las bellas artes'- que lleva por sí mismo a la reflexión (sin pretensión por mi parte de desmerecer al resto).
La parte en tono de humor negro es la más original y (para la época) rompedora, mientras que la descriptiva me parece mejor escrita y de algún modo me hace pensar en ella como precursora de 'A sangre fría'.
He de reconocer que haberla visto co
...more
Jennifer Uhlich
More like a 3.5. A slim volume that applies 19th century aesthetics to murder. Far more interesting for the details of the famous homicides of the day than for the little conceits that de Quincey uses to do what he really wants to do, which is to meditate on the details and mentality of what were then shocking murders. A faint echo of In Cold Blood here. Again, a work that is as interesting for the helpful endnotes that Oxford UP provides (I tip my hat to them), including the little tidbit that ...more
Laura Del alisal
Interesting stuff and genious quotes.
Alex
If you want to indulge in your dark side, read this. Very interesting!
Doti
I read only On Murder ..... and do not have other texts. Mr. de Quincey has his tongue firmly planted in a cheek and writes as an expert (or well-informed amateur) on the subject. The style is certainly from an earlier time, yet it amuses and helps one think of things in a different way.
Heather
We only had to read the post-script for class but it was so much better than Opium Eater that I was shocked! It actually had an interesting plot and narrative style, probably because it was based on a true murder rather than the workings of DeQuinceys mind ...
Kevin
De Quincey centers his discussion on the notorious career of the murderer John Williams, who in 1811 brutally killed seven people in London's East End. One of the first "true crime" novels which was based on the Ratcliffe highway murders.
Meeg
How to evaluate murder from an aesthetic perspective. Plus detailed accounts of the most prominent homicides of the early 1800s (especially the Ratcliffe Highway murders).
Gonzalo Oyanedel
Elegante y cínico ensayo que termina sufriendo por su inesperado (y algo contradictorio) complemento.
Scherzo
"La mera inteligencia,aunque útil e indispensable, es la más pobre de las facultades de la mente humana".
Philippe-Alexandre
Part 1 (Conférence) : LOL and awesome.
Part 2 (Supplement) : :'-(
Part 3 (Post-Scriptum) : :-(
Vija
Jan 07, 2010 Vija is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
wow give it a wow
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Thomas de Quincey was an English author and intellectual, best known for his Confessions of an English Opium-Eater (1821).
See also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_d...
More about Thomas de Quincey...
Confessions of an English Opium Eater Confessions of an English Opium-Eater & Other Writings On Murder Considered as One of the Fine Arts (Little Black Classics #04) Suspira de Profundis, Being a Sequel to the Confessions of an English Opium-eater (Works, Vol 16) Les Paradis Artificiels, Opium Et Haschisch

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“If once a man indulges himself in murder, very soon he comes to think little of robbing; and from robbing he comes next to drinking and Sabbath-breaking, and from that to incivility and procrastination.” 1 likes
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