The Silent Game: The Real World of Imaginary Spies

The Silent Game: The Real World of Imaginary Spies

by David Stafford


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The Silent Game traces the history of spy writers and their fiction from creator William Le Queux, of the Edwardian age, to John le Carré, of the Cold War era. David Stafford reveals the connections between fact and fiction as seen in the lives of writers with experience in intelligence, including John Buchan, Compton Mackenzie, Somerset Maugham, Ian Fleming, and Graham Greene. Le Queux used his spy fiction as xenophobic propaganda before and after World War I, and le Carré’s novels have provided reflections on the Cold War and the decline of Britain’s influence. Anxieties about the decline of the American “empire” have helped stimulate a more vigorous American literature of espionage, providing an index of contemporary American concerns about power relations. As Stafford suggests, the genre of espionage fiction rarely intends to document the real world of intelligence. Rather, it provides a popular vehicle for exploring themes of imperial decline, international crisis, and impending war.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780820339436
Publisher: University of Georgia Press
Publication date: 02/28/2012
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

DAVID STAFFORD is the author of ten books including Secret Agent: The True Story of the Covert War against Hitler, Spies beneath Berlin, Ten Days to D-Day: Citizens and Soldiers on the Eve of the Invasion, and Endgame, 1945: The Missing Final Chapter of World War II.

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