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Explores the various representations and imaginations of London in literature and popular culture, from Victorian times to the present day.
Imagined Londons explores the diverse ways that Britain's "global city" has been imagined and represented in literature, history, the arts, and popular culture, from the mid–nineteenth century to the present day. American and British contributors examine a variety of topics, ranging from poetry to architecture, from dance music to gay pornography, from "tube" maps to the role of Bangladeshi communities in shaping contemporary London politics. Broadly interdisciplinary and deeply attentive to London's historical diversity, the book is unified by its attention to a single question: How have the many imaginations and representations of London shaped—and been shaped by—history and culture? The answers provided within this volume offer the chance to view London in surprising new ways.
Pamela K. Gilbert is Associate Professor of English at the University of Florida. She is the author of Disease, Desire, and the Body in Victorian Women's Popular Novels and the coeditor (with Marlene Tromp and Aeron Haynie) of Beyond Sensation: Mary Elizabeth Braddon in Context, also published by SUNY Press.
"…lively, readable, and eclectic. " — Albion
"Imagined Londons affords a vivid exploration of the city's numerous geographical, textual, cultural, and artistic landscapes. Unlike much contemporary criticism—cultural, literary, or otherwise—this is a genuinely absorbing read, a page-turner, if you will. It has provided me with new accents and perspectives on a city that I visit often and that I have come to adore. " — Kenneth Womack, coeditor of Mapping the Ethical Turn: A Reader in Ethics, Culture, and Literary Theory
"The authors draw on literary, visual, and archival evidence, and make analytical arguments as well as descriptive cases for the complexity of the urban landscape. This is serious scholarship, but it's also clearly written and would serve a variety of audiences well, including general readers with an interest in London. " — Antoinette Burton, editor of Politics and Empire in Victorian Britain: A Reader
"As a Victorianist, I would have thought I'd only have wanted to read the first few essays, but the later pieces were so compelling that I was eager to keep turning the pages. I imagine this book would cross over to an educated popular readership. It's a text that current London residents or ex-Londoners would particularly enjoy. " — Talia Schaffer, author of The Forgotten Female Aesthetes: Literary Culture in Late-Victorian England