Ken’s first book, Dockers and Detectives, has now been re-published by Five Leaves Press. This early study of twentieth-century working class reading and writing in Britain helped revive a number of literary reputations, such as those of Alexander Baron and James Hanley, as well as distinguishing distinct regional literary cultures and narrative styles still existing in Britain.
The chapters deal with a group of Liverpool writers who produced a series of expressionist novels about tenement life and the hardships of life at sea, as well as the vibrant literature of London’s Jewish East End. Other chapters explore the popularity of American ‘tough-guy’ crime-writing in Britain in the 1930s, as well as the popular literature of the Second World War – on the home front, on the battlefield, and in the prisoner-of-war camp – with all the moral and political questions raised.
Available in store and online.