Wicked Wednesday-Champions of Peace and Nonviolence

Jessie- In NH where even though the calendar begs to differ spring still seems very far away!

After a bit of poking round the internet I discovered the theme of Women’s History Month this year is Visionary Women: Champions of Peace and Nonviolence. As writers of crime fiction featuring female sleuths, mostly amateur ones, does this resonate with you? Do you see your protagonists as champions of peace and nonviolence and, if so, how do you express that in your books?

Julie: What a great question. My answer: Yes! All three of my main protagonists, Ruth Clagan, Sully Sullivan and Lilly Jayne are all about restoring order. Ruth and Lilly are focused on fixing the issues in their towns. This is the role of the amateur sleuth, so this question resonates so well.

Edith: As a Quaker, Rose Carroll is a particular champion of peace and non violence. It’s important to her to bring justice to the falsely accused and to restore order to her community. And as Julie said, my cozy protagonists – Mac Almeida, Robbie Jordan, and Cam Flaherty – want peace to return to their small towns. Robbie has to resort to a bit of violence to defend her life in a few of the stories, but it’s not the way she normally operates.

Liz: It is a great question! Yes, Stan Connor and Maddie James each have a deep desire to have their worlds in order. And they both love their towns so much – Stan as a newbie finding her place and Maddie coming home – that neither of them can imagine it in turmoil for very long. So they are both committed to doing whatever they can to restore that order.

Barb: The main character in my next book, Jane Darrowfield, Professional Busybody, is described this way: “In Jane’s opinion, many people sadly lacked the skill to have difficult conversations with acquaintances and neighbors. Given a noisy house party or a car parked blocking a driveway, people stewed in silence—or worse, called the police—when a simple knock on the door and a polite request would have done the job. It was into this breach that Jane had leapt again and again.” The direct and difficult conversation is an important part of building the understanding required to live peacefully and non-violently in a complicated world.

Sherry: Sarah doesn’t think of herself as a person who goes about to be a champion of peace or nonviolence. I had an interesting conversation with Barb Goffman yesterday about Sarah’s motivation for doing something in book nine. I was trying to decide what lengths Sarah would go to save person A or person B. Barb said it didn’t matter, that Sarah has proved herself to be a person who would save either, that she’d save anyone if she could.

Jessie: I love all these responses! In my current series Beryl and Edwina have seen the aftermath of widespread violence caused by the Great War and have they no desire to allow it to take root anywhere near them during the peace. One of the appeals for them of starting a private enquiry agency was the opportunuty to restore order in whatever way they might be able.

Readers, who would you consider to be champions of peace and or nonviolence?

12 Thoughts

  1. I love thinking of mystery protagonists as champions of peace and nonviolence. It certainly seems accurate to me. And Barb’s quote especially is so true. I remember one neighbor who used to play music way too loudly. I delayed talking to him for weeks, but when I finally did he was very reasonable.

  2. I think Sally Castle is very much about peace – defining it broadly as “justice” and “restoring order.” After all, she is a public defense attorney, committed to not only solving the puzzle, but defending the rights of people, especially those who have no one else to stand with them, along the way. I’m sure she wishes things were less violent, but unfortunately that isn’t always possible.

  3. I love Jane Darrowfield already! She sounds like the Miss Manners of crime-fighters.

  4. None of my characters are violent women (they don’t use force for anything, or weapons), but I think they all choose to seek justice, even when it puts them at risk. Nor are they usually public figures–they don’t run for office, and only one has ever stood up in a public meeting and challenged anyone. Still, “doing the right thing” is important to each of them, and to those they care about.

  5. The drive to restore peace and order is at the heart of manybdetective novels, I think. Especially cozies.

  6. That’s the reason I love cozies. By definition there is always a mystery and usually a body or two, but there is no gore or described violence. And it is always a baddie who gets killed! 🙂

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