“Dead Cities, Crows, the rain and their Ripper, The Yorkshire Ripper”: The Red Riding Novels (1974, 1977, 1980, 1983) of David Peace as Lieux d’horreur

Martin S. King, Ian D. Cummins


This article explores the role and importance of place in the Red Riding novels of David Peace. Drawing on Nora’s (1989) concept of Lieux de mémoire and Rejinders’ (2010) development of this work in relation to the imaginary world of the TV detective and engaging with a body of literature on the city, it examines the way in which the bleak Yorkshire countryside and the city of Leeds in the North of England, in particular, is central to the narrative of Peace’s work and the locations described are reflective of the violence, corruption and immorality at work in the storylines. While Nora (1984) and Rejinders (2010) describe places as sites of memory negotiated through the remorse of horrific events, the authors agree that Peace’s work can be read as describing L’ieux d’horreur; a recalling of past events with the violence and horror left in.

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International Journal of Criminology and Sociological Theory | ISSN : 1916-2782