Rediscovered: Wittgenstein Dug Norbie

Kent Harrington pops in a link to a CrimeReads article about how the philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein wolfed down a steady diet of hardboiled American pulp crime fiction. Not something your average guy on the street would be expecting to hear, I bet.

Good article, surf over and read or skim as much as interests you. A high point for me was the section where Wittgenstein singles out Black Mask regular Norbert Davis and one of his Doan and Carstairs mysteries for special praise. He was thinking about sending Davis a letter telling him how much he liked his work, but that didn’t happen. Davis committed suicide in 1949 at the age of 40.

Ed Price — prolific pulpster E. Hoffmann Price — once told me that for awhile Davis was one of the writers in their circle (around Redwood City) who’d show up for parties. He called him Norbie.

The Comments section, by the way, is also interesting, as all these Wittgenstein fans try to digest the pulp info. One even asks if someone someday maybe could track down the Norbert Davis writings.

Yeah, wouldn’t that be nice?

Our pal Evan Lewis did the intro for the complete Doan and Carstairs series if you’re curious (and you can find more Norbie if you want to look).

But what I’m really curious about now: Did writing that intro make Evan a de facto egghead?

And, what would Wittgenstein think about Kent Harrington’s new one, Last Seen?

This entry was posted in Lit, News and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.