Seminar paper from the year 2008 in the subject English Language and Literature Studies - Literature, grade: 2,3, University of Freiburg (Englisches Seminar), course: Detective Fiction, 6 entries in the bibliography, language: English, abstract: The themes 'evil' and 'justice' are vital in detective fiction - without people committing evil deeds, there would be no need to employ detectives whose job it is to restore justice by identifying the criminals. However, this is only the basis for the plots. At the end of the novel we do get to know the villain, but by then we also know who was believed by the various characters to be that person. In the two novels I chose, The Sign of Four by Arthur Canon Doyle, first published in 1890 and Morality for Beautiful Girls by Alexander McCall Smith, first published in 2001, these villains are greedy, seek revenge or are savage. People fear them because they feel they do not have any social control over them. I will also deal with anthropological criminology which is discussed in both novels, more or less obviously. Throughout the essay I will show how the detectives and their helpers are used to contrast the wrongdoers. Closely connected to the evil is the wish to restore justice. In both novels it is not the police or the judiciary that deal with this task. The detectives are needed to detect the wrongdoers and therefore they can decide how they will punish them - for example, it is their decision whether they want to take the matter to the police or not. Another statement that the novels make is the fact that evil people are punished directly by their own evil deeds, because they influence their later life.