Interview | Scarlett Sabet in conversation with Gerard Malanga

You ask how my week has been? I’ve been in lockdown now for 3 weeks or so, though I might’ve lost count. I have plenty to keep me busy in the house here, plus I have responsibility towards my 3 cats. And then there’s dreamtime, between 4 & 6 in the morning. But suddenly I felt days back this ennui coming on, like, did the poetry suddenly disappear? Sometimes I’m concerned—but just for a moment mind you—whether I can match or even better the last one? There’s no way […]

Review | This House, National Theatre at Home

Undeniably, the UK has experienced a turbulent political era in the last five years, but it certainly meets its match in the five running from 1974 to 1979. From fistfights in parliament, to faked deaths, to MPs brought in to vote from their hospital beds, this period saw it all. In the critically acclaimed This House, playwright James Graham and director Jeremy Herrin masterfully capitalise on parliament’s real-life melodramas, creating an accessible political drama exploding with tension and laughter […]

Essay | Reflections on Orwell’s Coming Up for Air by Patrick Maxwell

“Call it peace, if you like. But when I say peace I don’t mean absence of war, I mean peace, a feeling in your guts. And it’s gone for ever if the rubber-truncheon boys get hold of us.” What moves us about this passage? It is not particularly difficult to know which literary world we are in, which part of history we are being exposed to, and even which author is speaking […]

Review | A Luminous Republic & Such Small Hands by Andrés Barba

Andrés Barba’s ghostly novella Such Small Hands met with resounding critical success in its native Spain, as well as in the UK and US with English translations by Lisa Dillman, in 2017. Darkly compelling, it was lauded for its unsettling plot and baroque descriptions, blending conventions from Greek tragedy and Gothic literature […]

Fiction | Negative Capability by Michèle Roberts

Yesterday ended in disaster. Very late at night, I decided to write down everything that had happened, the only way I could think of coping. So here goes. Yesterday I woke up at seven thirty in my white-painted wrought-iron bed, felt lazy, decided to have a lie-in. Almost immediately, above me, the neighbours’ bed began creaking. […]

Spotlight VI: Small Presses | British Book Awards Special 2020

With publishers big and small struggling through the current crisis, it is important for us to shine a spotlight on small presses, the work that they do and the books and authors that they publish. Recently recognised among the nine regional and country winners in the Small Press of the Year Award at the 2020 British Book Awards, today we shine the spotlight on four of the best small presses currently publishing in the UK and Ireland: Jacaranda Books, Sandstone Press, Comma Press and The Lilliput Press […]

Fiction | The Amnesty by Jen Calleja

Jen Calleja The Amnesty CASE STUDY 4 Below you will find extracted responses from the writings of PERSON A and PERSON B. PERSON A is an anonymous voluntary respondent to the first Amnesty on Sexism survey sent by the government to every woman and girl over the age of fifteen. PERSON B is an unidentified […]

Review | Arrested Development: Caleb Klaces’s Fatherhood & Ben Lerner’s The Topeka School by Houman Barekat

When my little brother was a baby he was extremely fond of a certain turquoise-coloured comfort blanket from Mothercare, which he christened Sha. Nobody knew why he called it that. Was it, perhaps, some obscure tribute to the Shah of Iran? This seemed unlikely: it was 1993 and the Shah, having been dead for fourteen years, was rarely if ever in the news. Some years later I read about Noam Chomsky’s famous thesis that the capacity for language is not something learnt but innate […]

Virtual Exhibition | Unseen Spring by Joe Machine

The London Magazine is delighted to host a virtual exhibition of Joe Machine’s new paintings. The series comprises motifs of spring and his iconic animal figures, such as the magpie and the fox. As ever with Joe’s painting the work draws the viewer into a mythically charged landscape. Yet these are delicate, quiet and hopeful paintings. London Magazine subscribers will receive a discount and a percentage of all sales will be donated to the NHS […]

Fiction | Radon Girls by Lauren Sarazen

I set my bag down at my feet, and looked back at the way I’d come, sweating, breathing hard. The path was narrow and shaped by switchbacks that snaked up the hill. It disappeared behind a bend adorned with a clump of morning glories that made the climb look bucolic and gentle. This was a lie. They hadn’t told me about the hills, the uneven quality of the roads. They’d told me to hire a cart to bring me up to the house, but I wasn’t in the habit of ordering carts. […]

Fiction | Fear In Your Water by Julia Bell

I had been reading Foucault – and not understanding it properly; I was too distracted to concentrate. But I got the gist of it, at least what I thought was the important stuff, what he was saying about madness and how it has been civilised out of us, how back in the day it used to be that sane people and mad people all lived together and there wasn’t so much of a difference. And ‘mad’ people were often seen as visionaries with special access to God. It was only when people […]

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