Tales of Mean Streets

Arthur Morrison
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ISBN 9780571246731 Format Paperback
Published 30/10/2008 Length 176 pages

About Book

These stories are a brilliant evocation of a narrow, close-knit community, that of the streets of London's East End.

First published in 1894, Arthur Morrison prefaced his collection with a list of the common misconceptions about the East End of his day, all of which he felt ignored the human element. Having lived and worked there, he knew that East Enders were not a race apart, but ordinary men and women, scraping by perhaps, but neither criminals nor paupers.

Here he chronicles their adventures and misadventures, their wooings and their funerals, with sympathy, humour and a sense of both the tragedies and the comedies to be found in the 'mean streets', from Lizerunt's disastrous marriage to Scuddy Lond's plausible but imperfect conversion and Squire Napper's quickly dispersed fortune.

  • About Arthur Morrison

    Arthur George Morrison (1863-1945) was born and raised in the East End of London. His journalism was first published in the Globe in 1885 and he then worked as a clerk to the Beaumont Trustees, becoming sub-editor of the house paper, the Palace Journal. He left at the end of 1890 to join the editorial staff of the evening Globe before publishing his first book, The Shadows around Us, a collection of supernatural tales, in 1891. It is his acclaimed and controversial East End works though, Tales of Mean Streets (1894), A Child of the Jago (1896), and The Hole in the Wall (1902), for which he is best known.

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