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The author examines the process of social life and the relationship of myth, popular formula, and the mystery genre to social psychology. The book presents social construction of reality theory as a methodology upon which the structure of mass-mediated popular fiction can be examined, postulating definitions of myth and formula and advancing a new language of literary analysis that acknowledges the socially defining, democratizing experience of popular fiction. Social-psychological analysis is focused on the mystery genre and examines its taxonomy, including the supernatural, fiction noir, gangster, thief, thriller, and detective formulas.