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The People of the Abyss Paperback – Illustrated, 10 September 2018
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The People of the Abyss is a book by Jack London (Call of the Wild, White Fang) about life in the East End of London in 1902. He wrote this first-hand account after living in the East End (including the Whitechapel District) for several weeks, sometimes staying in workhouses or sleeping on the streets. In his attempt to understand the working-class of this deprived area of London the author stayed as a lodger with a poor family. The conditions he experienced and wrote about were the same as those endured by an estimated 500,000 of the contemporary London poor.
Includes 73 photographs by the author.
About the Author
- Publisher : Antipodes Press; Illustrated edition (10 September 2018)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 238 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0999428322
- ISBN-13 : 978-0999428320
- Dimensions : 13.34 x 1.52 x 20.32 cm
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What strikes me is that if we’ve seen and witnessed such unspeakable living conditions (and, clearly, in the case of the East End, moved on), why haven’t the lessons learned been used to improve people’s lives in all the other conurbations of the UK - and elsewhere in the world?
The book was very engaging and easy to read - and built to a cogent climax. Lovely!
What is this technology and why should you care? Well it means that out of copyright books-being those published before 1923 in the US-can be scanned and reprinted by anybody, but in the case of this book and this publisher by a COMPUTER, and sold to you.
This seems to mean that you get no human intervention and that spacing conventions are absent: notably between chapter headings and text, between subheadings and text and even between the end of one chapter and the start of the next.
Everything in this miserable little edition is cramped together with no visual style (and this includes a size 9 font to save space and, presumably, paper).
The publishers, General Books dot Net offer a disclaimer behind the front cover "How We Made This Book For You" which states that they feel it is more important to offer a, possibly out of print, book rather than not at all: but there are many of other editions of the book listed here. They also offer a link to examine this book and others (presumably all conforming to the above out of copyright) for free on their website.
But I am not interested in the offer of reading or examining electronically scanned books.
I want to participate in the pleasure that a book can bring, and this technology-even if we assume it is not a scam- brings the reader none.
This review unfortunately doesn't address the contents of Jack London's book, because the edition is too unpleasant to read: buy yourself another.