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AMERICAN STORIES - The Gatewood Caper

时间:2006-05-09 16:00来源:互联网 提供网友:yeying0716   字体: [ ]
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AMERICAN STORIES - The Gatewood Caper1

By Dashiell Hammett

Broadcast: Saturday, August 06, 2005

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Introduce to "The Gatewood Caper"

"The Gatewood Caper" (1923) (also known as "Crooked2 Souls") has been filmed many times over the last twenty years as an episode of TV cop shows, without credit to Hammett. You have to wonder: when producers and writers in story conference decide to remake this kidnapping story or Woolrich's "Nightmare" or Fleischer's "The Narrow Margin3" one more time, do they refer to these stories by name? Or has even the origin of these works been lost to Hollywood tradition? In any case, this tale is generally considered the best of the early Continental4 Op tales. Hammett's early fiction has an austere5 quality, compared to that of his colleague and predecessor6 Carroll John Daly. The lurid7 events of the tale are narrated8 in a deliberately9 dry tone by the Continental Op, who has seen it all, and who is Not Emotionally Involved. More than just tone, however, the austerity is conveyed by the plot. The story focuses on a strong, plain symmetric plot pattern, and strips all irrelevant10 detail away to reveal that plot. There is something contemplative about the story: it exists mainly to unveil a certain pattern, and hold it up to the reader's and author's gaze for contemplation.

"Fly Paper" and "The Gatewood Caper" are linked. The later story seems to grow out of plot elements of the earlier. Everything, especially the personal relationships among the younger characters, has grown more complex in the later tale. Hammett's storytelling in 1929 is much more fluid. It sweeps the reader along pleasantly.


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1 caper frTzz     
v.雀跃,欢蹦;n.雀跃,跳跃;续随子,刺山柑花蕾;嬉戏
参考例句:
  • The children cut a caper in the yard.孩子们在院子里兴高采烈地乱蹦乱跳。
  • The girl's caper cost her a twisted ankle.小姑娘又蹦又跳,结果扭伤了脚踝。
2 crooked xvazAv     
adj.弯曲的;不诚实的,狡猾的,不正当的
参考例句:
  • He crooked a finger to tell us to go over to him.他弯了弯手指,示意我们到他那儿去。
  • You have to drive slowly on these crooked country roads.在这些弯弯曲曲的乡间小路上你得慢慢开车。
3 margin 67Mzp     
n.页边空白;差额;余地,余裕;边,边缘
参考例句:
  • We allowed a margin of 20 minutes in catching the train.我们有20分钟的余地赶火车。
  • The village is situated at the margin of a forest.村子位于森林的边缘。
4 continental Zazyk     
adj.大陆的,大陆性的,欧洲大陆的
参考例句:
  • A continental climate is different from an insular one.大陆性气候不同于岛屿气候。
  • The most ancient parts of the continental crust are 4000 million years old.大陆地壳最古老的部分有40亿年历史。
5 austere GeIyW     
adj.艰苦的;朴素的,朴实无华的;严峻的
参考例句:
  • His way of life is rather austere.他的生活方式相当简朴。
  • The room was furnished in austere style.这间屋子的陈设都很简单朴素。
6 predecessor qP9x0     
n.前辈,前任
参考例句:
  • It will share the fate of its predecessor.它将遭受与前者同样的命运。
  • The new ambassador is more mature than his predecessor.新大使比他的前任更成熟一些。
7 lurid 9Atxh     
adj.可怕的;血红的;苍白的
参考例句:
  • The paper gave all the lurid details of the murder.这份报纸对这起凶杀案耸人听闻的细节描写得淋漓尽致。
  • The lurid sunset puts a red light on their faces.血红一般的夕阳映红了他们的脸。
8 narrated 41d1c5fe7dace3e43c38e40bfeb85fe5     
v.故事( narrate的过去式和过去分词 )
参考例句:
  • Some of the story was narrated in the film. 该电影叙述了这个故事的部分情节。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • Defoe skilfully narrated the adventures of Robinson Crusoe on his desert island. 笛福生动地叙述了鲁滨逊·克鲁索在荒岛上的冒险故事。 来自《现代汉英综合大词典》
9 deliberately Gulzvq     
adv.审慎地;蓄意地;故意地
参考例句:
  • The girl gave the show away deliberately.女孩故意泄露秘密。
  • They deliberately shifted off the argument.他们故意回避这个论点。
10 irrelevant ZkGy6     
adj.不恰当的,无关系的,不相干的
参考例句:
  • That is completely irrelevant to the subject under discussion.这跟讨论的主题完全不相关。
  • A question about arithmetic is irrelevant in a music lesson.在音乐课上,一个数学的问题是风马牛不相及的。
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TAG标签:   american  story  gatewood  caper
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