Journey Through A Small Planet

May 27, 2011

I’m re-reading this book, a memoir by the ‘Anglo-Jewish’ poet and novelist Emanuel Litvinoff which I greatly enjoyed a few years ago, to see how his life intersects with our slice. He grew up in the Brick Lane area and mentions various places tantalizingly close to our line… I’m hoping to find something that’s bang on though, not just a street away. I wonder if I can connect our straightforward linearity to the far more organic web of routes around the streets he describes.

Even if Litvinoff doesn’t give me any joy, I think I might still be interested in exploring something related to the Jewish history of the area. Some of my family come from this background but I’ve never really investigated. I know that my grandfather lived and worked in East London for part of his life. He attended work functions at the Great Eastern Hotel, part of Liverpool St Station. That’s definitely on the line but I’m not sure I can yet see a piece of work about the annual gathering of the British Furniture-makers’ Association. Not quite sure where this is leading but it’s worth some more digging…

Oh and if none of that works out, I also have an idea brewing about the relationship between the cross-section created when our line slices through a block of flats and the theoretical notion of a cross-section of society, as represented by the area’s demographic information.

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2 Responses to “Journey Through A Small Planet”

  1. Aaron said

    So, what was the verdict on the book? 🙂

    • How great to hear from you!

      I’m a big fan of the book – it’s an incredible piece of writing. And my grandfather grew up on the streets he describes, so it has a personal resonance too. But having read it twice I feel I should perhaps move on to some of the novels next! 🙂

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