I am currently working on a study of the American crime film from 1930 to the present entitled, Left-Handed Endeavour: The Politics and Ideology of the Hollywood Crime Film. The book considers the crime film as a composite genre comprised of a range of sub-genres, each with its own commercial, formal and cultural history, and each with a distinctive set of aesthetic characteristics and ideological concerns.
I am developing ideas for a study of the representation and mediation of American popular music in fiction and film. I am especially interested in the ways in which African-American music has been treated in these media, particularly as forms such as ragtime, blues, jazz and rhythm and blues have crossed over into the commercial mainstream and been embraced by transracial and global audiences. Aspects of this study have been published in journal articles and book chapters dealing with movie musicals about the blues, with novels that deal with African American music in the context of racial identity and authenticity, and with characterisations of 1960s rock music in fiction and underground journalism.