By Shirley Frondorf
In 1982, a sensational homicide trial in Phoenix, Arizona, reverberated through the criminal group. Restaurateur Steven Steinberg, who killed his spouse by means of stabbing her 26 occasions, was once acquitted; his felony safeguard portrayed the sufferer as an overwhelming "Jewish American Princess" whose excesses could have provoked her violent finish. interpreting the constitution of the defense's case, Frondorf, an legal professional who used to be formerly a psychiatric social employee, follows the subject that made Elana Steinberg the villain, rather than the sufferer, of the piece. The defense's forensic presentation, reinforced via testimony from psychiatrists, maintained that Steinberg devoted the crime whereas sleepwalking, an abnormality allegedly because of the intemperate spending of his spouse. Frondorf recreates the trial whose final result scarred the tightly knit Jewish neighborhood of Phoenix.
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Extra info for Death of a Jewish American Princess: The True Story of a Victim on Trial
The opening section establishes a dual historical context for understanding contemporary American interest in serial murder, the ﬁrst concentrating on the moment serial murder became deﬁned as a particularly American crime, and the second solidifying the “Americanness” of serial murder in a way that is still extremely inﬂuential today. The second section updates the historical context by emphasizing how serial murder has been adopted and adapted by American popular culture in order to both focus and dissipate anxieties about the nature of celebrity, the relation between normality and monstrosity, and the place of violence in sexuality.
For example, in The Whitechapel Murders, or the Mysteries of the East End, a pamphlet published by the London ﬁrm of G. Purkess in the midst of the 39 the victorian killer as media star murders and consisting of a strange combination of reproduced inquest testimony and ﬁctional detective story, the anonymous author claims: “Brutality in the shape of bloodthirsty hacking was an aggravation for which English society, with all its sins on its head, declines to be responsible. When stories appear in the newspapers of atrocities on dead bodies we can generally boast that they are committed in a different latitude, and belong to a lower civilisation than ours.
By reconstructing these debates, I will demonstrate how the contemporaneous response to Jack the Ripper and H. H. Holmes, a response torn between ejecting these ﬁgures from the public sphere altogether and turning them into forms of lurid entertainment, inaugurates the ongoing debate about whether famous serial killers are the consummate insiders or outsiders of American culture. Fear, Enjoyment, and the Ripper Industry There is no denying the fact that a large part of the British public’s reaction to the Whitechapel murders was abject fear and panic.
Death of a Jewish American Princess: The True Story of a Victim on Trial by Shirley Frondorf