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Street Culture, Social Reform and the Victorian Underworld

Further information on this digital resource can be found on our website www.amdigital.co.uk.

This collection brings to life the teeming streets of Victorian London, inviting students and scholars to explore the gin palaces, brothels and East End slums of the nineteenth century’s greatest city.

From salacious ‘swell’s guides’ to scandalous broadsides and subversive posters, the material sold and exchanged on London’s bustling thoroughfares offers an unparalleled insight into the dark underworld of the city. Children’s chapbooks, street cries, slang dictionaries and ballads were all part of a vibrant culture of street literature.

This is also an incredible visual resource for students and scholars of London, with many full colour maps, cartoons, sketches and a full set of the essential Tallis’ Street Views of London – a unique resource for the study of London architecture and commerce. There are also important Gissing manuscripts relating to London, including his famous scrapbooks.

Topics covered include:

  • the underworld
  • slang
  • working-class culture
  • street literature
  • popular music
  • urban topography
  • ‘slumming’
  • Prostitution
  • the Temperance Movement
  • social reform
  • Toynbee Hall
  • police and criminality

London Low Life


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