Tales of Two Londons: Stories From A Fractured City

Tales of Two Londons: Stories From A Fractured City

London today is embattled as rarely before. In a city of enormous wealth, poverty is rampant. The burnt-out hulk of Grenfell Tower stands as an appalling reminder that inequality can be so acute as to be murderous.

Here, Claire Armistead has drawn together fiction, reportage and poetry to capture the schisms defining the contemporary city. With nearly 40% of the capital’s population born outside the country, Tales of Two Londons eschews what Armistead labels a “tyranny of tone,” emphasising voices rarely heard.

Alongside writers with established reputations are stories from previously unpublished immigrants and refugees, from people working with deprived youth in the city, from Kurdish activists, and from tenants’ groups. Together, in a compelling collection, they capture the fabric of the city: its housing, its food, its pubs, its buses, even its graveyards.

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09 May 2019
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About the author

  • Claire Armitstead

    Claire Armitstead is Associate Editor, Culture, for the Guardian. Over a 25-year career with the paper she has been arts editor, literary editor and head of books. She presents the weekly Guardian books podcast and is a regular speaker at live events in the UK and internationally. She is also a trustee of the freedom of speech charity English PEN.