Crime writer Mike Phillips investigates the coming of age of black British crime fiction and asks why there is still a reluctance to see the black detective as hero. In recent years, as the ethnic mix in the UK has changed, the literature produced by black Britons has embraced broader themes beyond questions of identity and freedom. The autobiographical narratives of the past are being superseded by a new generation of writers tackling other genres.

Mike Phillips was one of the first to delve into this area with Sam Dean, the journalist who features in his novels Blood Rights and The Late Candidate. In this programme, he meets other writers who are following his example and asks why the UK still lags behind the US, where novelists such as Walter Mosley and Barbara Neely have captured the black crime fiction genre. Phillips discovers why this is the case.

Presenter/Mike Phillips, Producer/Paula McGinley for the BBC

BBC RADIO 4 Tuesday 31 May 2011

In For The Kill

Tuesday 31 May

11.30am-12.00noon BBC RADIO 4

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