Beyond Bond: Spies in Fiction and Film

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Beyond Bond: Spies in Fiction and Film
About the Book

At a time when the methods and purposes of intelligence agencies are under a great deal of scrutiny, author Wesley Britton offers an unprecedented look at their fictional counterparts. In Beyond Bond: Spies in Film and Fiction, Britton traces the history of espionage in literature, film, and other media, demonstrating how the spy stories of the 1840s began cementing our popular conceptions of what spies do and how they do it. Considering sources from Graham Greene to Ian Fleming, Alfred Hitchcock to Tom Clancy, Beyond Bond looks at the tales that have intrigued readers and viewers over the decades. Included here are the propaganda films of World War II, the James Bond phenomenon, anti-communist spies of the Cold War era, and military espionage in the eighties and nineties. No previous book has considered this subject with such breadth, and Britton intertwines reality and fantasy in ways that illuminate both. He reveals how most themes and devices in the genre were established in the first years of the twentieth century, and also how they have been used quite differently from decade to decade, depending on the political concerns of the time. In all, Beyond Bond offers a timely and penetrating look at an intriguing world of fiction, one that sometimes, and in ever-fascinating ways, can seem all too real.

 

At a time when the methods and purposes of intelligence agencies are under a great deal of scrutiny, author Wesley Britton offers an unprecedented look at their fictional counterparts. In Beyond Bond: Spies in Film and Fiction, Britton traces the history of espionage in literature, film, and other media, demonstrating how the spy stories of the 1840s began cementing our popular conceptions of what spies do and how they do it. Considering sources from Graham Greene to Ian Fleming, Alfred Hitchcock to Tom Clancy, Beyond Bond looks at the tales that have intrigued readers and viewers over the decades. Included here are the propaganda films of World War II, the James Bond phenomenon, anti-communist spies of the Cold War era, and military espionage in the eighties and nineties. No previous book has considered this subject with such breadth, and Britton intertwines reality and fantasy in ways that illuminate both.

 

He reveals how most themes and devices in the genre were established in the first years of the twentieth century, and also how they have been used quite differently from decade to decade, depending on the political concerns of the time. And he delves into such aspects of the genre as gadgetry, technology, and sexuality-aspects that have changed with the times as much as the politics have. In all, Beyond Bond offers a timely and penetrating look at an intriguing world of fiction, one that sometimes, and in ever-fascinating ways, can seem all too real.

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Genre: Nonfiction
Publisher: Praeger
Publication Year: 2005
ASIN: B000UG9JHY
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About the Author
Wesley Britton

Besides his 33 years in the classroom, Dr. Wesley Britton considers his Beta-Earth Chronicles the most important work he’s ever done. “I suppose an author profile is intended to be a good little biography,” Britton says, “but the best way to know who I am is to read my novels.”

Still, a few things you might like to know about Wes include the fact he’s the author of four non-fiction books on espionage in the media, most notably The Encyclopedia of TV Spies (2009). Beginning in 1983, he was a widely published poet, article writer for a number of encyclopedias, and was a noted scholar of American literature. Since those days, for sites like BlogCritics.org and BookPleasures.com, Britton wrote over 500 music, book, and movie reviews. For seven years, he was co-host of online radio's Dave White Presents for which he contributed celebrity interviews with musicians, authors, actors, and entertainment insiders.

Starting in fall 2015, his science fiction series, The Beta-Earth Chronicles, debuted with The Blind Alien. Throughout 2016, four sequels followed including The Blood of Balnakin, When War Returns, A Throne for an Alien, and The Third Earth. Return to Alpha will be the sixth volume of this multi-planetary epic.

Britton earned his doctorate in American Literature at the University of North Texas in 1990. He taught English at Harrisburg Area Community College until his retirement in 2016. He serves on the Board of Directors for Vision Resources of Central Pennsylvania. He lives with his one and only wife, Betty, in Harrisburg, PA.

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