London - Urban explorers and commentators

The East End and urban poverty

Author: Austin Freeman

Title: ‘In the London Docks’, in George Sims, ed., Living London (1901), vol.1.

Keywords: London, Docks

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Born in Marylebone, London, Richard Austin Freeman (1862-1943) was a British author of detective stories, many of which drew upon his formative experiences as a colonial surgeon during four years in the Gold Coast Colony. After the First World War, Freeman became increasingly involved in the eugenics movement, penning a 1921 tract, Social Decay and Regeneration, on the ills of modern society, for which he blamed the rise of machinery and urban life. He died in Gravesend, Kent. Freeman’s astute impressions of the London Docks featured in Living London, English journalist George Sims’ 3-volume publication that chronicles a variety of London life.

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