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Sam Selvon, The Lonely Londoners

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This free course concentrates on Sam Selvon's twentieth-century novel, The Lonely Londoners. It considers the depiction of migration in the text as well as Selvon's treatment of memory as a vital part of the migrant's experience.

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • understand representations of the themes of migration and memory in Sam Selvon’s novel The Lonely Londoners
  • relate this text to the context of Caribbean migrant experience
  • carry out critical analysis of prose fiction
  • discuss the novel in relation to the concept of literatures.

By: The Open University

  • Duration 10 hours
  • Updated Wednesday 6th January 2016
  • Intermediate level
  • Posted under Literature
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Sam Selvon, The Lonely Londoners


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This course focuses on Sam Selvon (1923–1994) and his novel The Lonely Londoners, published in 1956. This text is looked at in relation to the themes of migration and memory.

The edition of The Lonely Londoners that is referred to in this course is the Penguin Modern Classics (2006) edition, with an introduction by Susheila Nasta. You should read the novel when instructed to do so in the course.

This free course is an adapted extract from the Open University course A230 : Reading and studying literature [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] . It can also be found in the publication Sara Haslam and Sue Asbee (eds) (2012) The Twentieth Century, published by The Open University and Bloomsbury Academic.

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