Essay | On Angela Carter by Sharlene Teo

I was thirteen when I first encountered The Bloody Chamber, back in the humid and claustrophobic childhood bedroom that I shared with my older sister in Bukit Timah, Singapore. I remember idly scanning my sister’s bookshelf; plywood, festooned with glow-in-the-dark plastic stars. I spotted a bent orange spine on the second shelf [...]

Essay | Becket back in the cathedral

Great drama has a way of always being relevant whenever it is performed, even if, like T. S. Eliot’s Murder in the Cathedral, it isn’t performed very often. The play is, of course, about the assassination of Thomas Becket, but with undertones of the shadow of Fascism over Europe. Next year sees the 850th anniversary of the event [...]

Essay | Tony Harrison: Poetry & Class

Patrick MaxwellTony Harrison: Poetry & ClassThe use of poetry as a form of class war has arguably never had particularly significant results in much of...

News | Caoilinn Hughes, on winning the Collyer Bristow Prize 2019

Caoilinn HughesOn winning the Collyer Bristow PrizeFirst thanks go to my peers—Sophie Mackintosh, Danny Denton, Samuel Fisher and Katherine Kilalea—for writing such good books...

Essay | A Dream of Maps: Notes from a Book Launch...

Chris Rice first met Matthew Sweeney at a poetry workshop in London in 1976, and they remained friends for forty-two years until Matthew's death in 2018. Chris Rice's elegy to Matthew and their long friendship [...]

Essay | Foreword to Zigmunds Skujiņš’s Flesh-Coloured Dominoes

Jelgava, lying just a short distance south of the Latvian capital Riga, once the seat of the Dukes of Courland as well as being a western outpost of the Russian Tsarist empire, has historically been something of a cultural crossroads. Whereas Riga became prosperous [...]

Review | Fur Coats in Tahiti by Jeremy Over

“The best way to live in the present is less carefully”: for better or worse, Jeremy Over’s winningly preposterous fourth collection, Fur Coats in Tahiti, follows its own advice to the letter. On the whole, I think, the better wins out, but let’s start by getting some of the worse [...]

Essay | Unmitigated Disaster: The Beatles’ Abbey Road by Kenneth Womack

The following essay is an extract from Kenneth Womack's forthcoming book Solid State: The Story of “Abbey Road” and the End of the Beatles,...

Essay | The King of Hay-on-Wye

A maverick anarchist, bookseller and entrepreneur, Richard Booth, who has died aged 80, transformed the small Powys town of Hay-on-Wye into a mecca for the second-hand book. His significant and colourful legacy in the book trade inspired a formula [...]

Essay | A.E. Housman: Loveliest of Poets by Patrick Maxwell

A. E. Housman was an introverted man whose poetry is somewhat unique in its widespread appeal. Despite only producing two collections of poetry in his lifetime (A Shropshire Lad in 1896 and Last Poems in 1922), his reputation as a master of lyricism [...]

Essay | Come Back West, Magic Realism, We Need You Too

In 2016, Roisin O’Donnell published an article in The Irish Times which addressed the curious fact that so few Irish writers wrote in the magic realist mode. Putting in a plea for magic realism, she argued that “Ireland, with its healthy litany of bread-crusts-make-your-hair-go-curly superstitions, along with its hand-me-down myths [...]

Essay | W.H. Auden: The Man Who Spoke for the Dumb...

One of the hallmarks of a great artist is their often lugubrious disdain for their own work. The reclusive French composer Paul Dukas was self-critical to the degree that he only allowed fifteen of his works to be published. Needless to say, they have become much loved [...]

Essay | On the Benefits of Dancing Naked in Public

In the pub, Jemima raises both her arms above her, then swings one back, turning her head to follow the arc it makes in the air. “Something like that,” she says, sitting back down and taking a chip from the plate between us. We are attempting a reconstruction. What we are attempting to reconstruct is a theatre show called Trilogy, made by an artist called [...]

Essay | Travel Writers as Citizens of Nowhere by Cecily Blench

At the Conservative Party Conference in 2016, shortly after the Brexit vote, the new Prime Minister Theresa May gave a speech in which she said these words: ‘If you are a citizen of the world, you are a citizen of nowhere’. She made this point while trying to address the concerns of those who voted for Brexit because of immigration [...]

Spotlight V: Journals Edition | LE GUN / Hotel

The London Magazine has long been a champion of emerging writers and independent publishers, stretching back to the 1950s and 60s, when young writers...

Archive | Apollinaire 1880-1918 by Simon Watson Taylor

‘Où êtes-vous ô jeunes filles’, sighed Apollinaire nostalgically, in a particularly inventive ‘calligramme’ sent from his army post in 1914. And the names he lists form the wings of a dove hovering above a fountain: Mia, Mareye, Yette, Lorie, Annie, Marie. These by no means comprise a roll-call of his youthful conquests, of course. Perhaps they were the only ones he found it convenient to remember at that moment, or perhaps those particular names just fitted nicely into the poem’s [...]
The Nowhere Man cover

Essay | Introduction to Kamala Markandaya’s The Nowhere Man

The following essay is the introduction to the latest edition of The Nowhere Man, a novel by Kamala Markandaya, first published in 1972, now...

Essay | Low Fidelity: The Case for Shakespeare’s Reinvention by Katrina...

Katrina BennettLow Fidelity: The Case for Shakespeare's Reinvention Perhaps more so than any other Elizabethan writer, William Shakespeare was well aware of the necessity to...

Essay | Memories of the 60s by Leonard Quart

Leonard QuartMemories of the 60s I have been trying hard to emotionally survive the Trump era, while living with feelings of revulsion and hopelessness about...

Spotlight IV: Penned in the Margins

The London Magazine has long been a champion of emerging writers and independent publishers, stretching back to the 1950s and 60s, when young writers...

Archive | Coming to London II by Leonard Woolf

The following piece was first published in The London Magazine October 1955 Volume 2 No. 10 as “Coming to London — II”, part of...

Archive | Coming to London IX by Christopher Isherwood

The following piece was first published in The London Magazine August 1956 Volume 3 No. 8 as "Coming to London — IX", part of...

Essay | Heaney At Home by Simon Tait

Simon TaitHeaney At Home Seamus Heaney’s brother Hugh sums him up better than anyone. “Seamus’s feet never left the ground”, he says, “and you could...

Extract | Rosalind by Arifa Akbar

"Rosalind" by Arifa Akbar, extract taken from Tales of Two Londons: Stories from a Fractured City, ed. Claire Armitstead, Arcadia Books, London, 2019. Copyright...

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