Instructor: Scharnhorst TR 9:30 AM – 10:50 AM .
A google search for “true crime” immediately brings up the question, “Why is true crime so popular?” Over four million hits later, and we still don’t have an exact answer. From questions about the health of our obsession to why the genre appeals more to women, the true crime genre is as difficult to define as a cold case is to solve.
This semester we will explore the true crime genre in-depth, examining its historical underpinnings and making our way through articles, novels, podcasts, television episodes, memoirs, and social media posts. We will be guided by the voices of the creators, from police officers to crime reporters to the victims themselves. In doing so, we aim to understand the rhetorical value of the genre, how it is utilized by different creators, as well as its significance to American culture as a whole.