Sunday, May 3, 2015
Kellow Chesney, Pickpockets, Beggars, and Ratcatchers: Life in the Victorian Underworld. To call this book depressing is barely touching it. It is a detailed social history of the most tragic aspects of Victorian poverty and misery. The only thing that makes it tolerable is the cleverness with which people at the bottom kept body and soul together. It relies heavily on Victorian accounts of life in these bizzarre circumstances, many wriiten by Dickens in his capacity as journalist and the enormous amount of Parliamenatry inestigation of the urban misery that developed.