London Fictions is a website curated by BBC journalist, Andrew Whitehead. Andrew is an adopted Londoner and is passionate about London fiction. He aims, with this site, to share his excitement about his subject with others.
London Fictions features many of the London novels you would expect to find here, but part of the mission of the site is to remind people about some of the great ‘lost’ London writers. Accordingly, he has featured pieces on books by Walter Besant, Arthur Morrison Sajjad Zaheer and many others who are in danger of being forgotten by the ordinary reader.
As Walter Benjamin suggests in The Arcades Project, it is often in the discarded remnants of a culture that we find its treasures:
poets find the refuse of society on their street and derive their heroic subject from this very refuse. This means that a common type is, as it were, superimposed upon their illustrious type. … Ragpicker or poet — the refuse concerns both
But Whitehead wants those who visit his site to do more than just read; he urges readers to walk the London streets depicted in the novels he features, to experience that delightful feeling of disorientation that sometimes comes about when one brings together the real world and the one of the imagination.
And for those of you who enjoy this blog, don’t forget to check out Bobby Seal’s article on Dorothy Richardson’s The Tunnel.