Fritz Lang and the Life of Crime

Michael Wood

As far as we know, Fritz Lang’s life of crime was confined to his films, although there was some gossip about the circumstances of his first wife’s convenient death. The familiar phrase has many uses and meanings, of course, and we might say the more the better. The lives we imagine for crime may help us to see in it and around it, and thinking about crime may help us to think about other matters. Still, we need a way of managing the profusion, and I am going to suggest three major meanings or reference points for the phrase.

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