The author examines the turn-of-the-century debate over prison reform by closely analyzing Richard Marsh's short story "For Debt" (1902). The story presents a powerful critique of imprisonment in a guise acceptable to Marsh's lower-middleclass readership. By blurring the boundaries of fiction, prison autobiography, and investigative journalism, the story further highlights the entertainment value of these genres in the early 1900s.
- Bernard Heldmann
- Richard Marsh
- prison narrative
- prison reform
Vuohelainen, M. (2007). Distorting the Genre, Defining the Audience, Detecting the Author: Richard Marsh's "For Debt" (1902). Clues A Journal of Detection, 25(4), 17-26. https://doi.org/10.3200/CLUS.25.4.17-26