Published online by Cambridge University Press: 01 April 2022
The popular genre of the Mediterranean noir responds to the reorganization of global politics and economies. Situated in fallen empires and ineffective modern states, noir novels in French, Spanish, Greek, Turkish, Croatian, English, and Arabic presents a grim, horrified view of the global system. Their sensual detectives investigates criminal activities deriving from an internationally mobile capital—a phenomenon often figured as contemporary gangsterism. The detective affiliates himself with dispossessed migrants and nomads while also valuing local knowledge and cultural particularity. The brilliant lighting and shadowy dangers the Mediterranean noir thus present in an exaggerated form some of the geopolitical and ecological dilemmas facing the region. Despite the pervasive cynicism of the genre, glimmers of utopian optimism appear in the figure of the sea.