Zola and the Serial Killer: Robert Black and La Bête Humaine

Lynes, Adam and Wilson, David and Jackson, Craig (2012) Zola and the Serial Killer: Robert Black and La Bête Humaine. International Journal of Criminology and Sociology, 1. pp. 69-80. ISSN 1929-4409/12

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This article presents a critical analysis of Emile Zola’s Le Bête Humaine – a critical analysis which forms the
basis of a case study of the real-life, British serial killer Robert Black. The fictional character of Jacques Lantier, a train driver living in France in the late 19th century, who is plagued by thoughts of committing murder is compared to Black - a former PDS van driver - who has been convicted of murdering four young girls between 1981 and 1986. The article explores Zola’s comments and warnings about the relationship between civilisation and the ever-advancing technology that it creates in order to better the human species or, as is the case of Lantier and Black, for the worse.

Item Type: Article
1 October 2012Published Online
2 July 2012Accepted
Subjects: L300 Sociology
L400 Social Policy
L600 Anthropology
L900 Others in Social studies
Q300 English studies
Divisions: Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences > Dept. Criminology and Sociology
Depositing User: Adam Lynes
Date Deposited: 28 Mar 2018 08:53
Last Modified: 03 Nov 2021 11:25
URI: http://www.open-access.bcu.ac.uk/id/eprint/5751

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