© 2016

The Palgrave Handbook of Literature and the City

  • Jeremy Tambling

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvii
  2. The City in Theory

  3. European Cities

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 89-91
    2. Daniel Bristow
      Pages 93-109
    3. Jason Finch
      Pages 127-146
    4. Jonathan White
      Pages 147-163
    5. Ulrike Zitzlsperger
      Pages 165-182
    6. Paul Fung
      Pages 183-195
    7. Aitor Bikandi-Meijas, Paul Vita
      Pages 215-231
    8. Daniel Bristow
      Pages 233-243
    9. Jeremy Tambling
      Pages 245-259
    10. David Spurr
      Pages 261-276
  4. North American Cities

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 277-282

About this book


This book is about the impact of literature upon cities world-wide, and cities upon literature. It examines why the city matters so much to contemporary critical theory, and why it has inspired so many forms of writing which have attempted to deal with its challenges to think about it and to represent it. Gathering together 40 contributors who look at different modes of writing and film-making in throughout the world, this handbook asks how the modern city has  engendered so much theoretical consideration, and looks at cities and their literature from China to Peru, from New York to Paris, from London to Kinshasa. It looks at some of the ways in which modern cities – whether capitals, shanty-towns, industrial or ‘rust-belt’ – have forced themselves on people’s ways of thinking and writing.


Space Subjectivity World Postmodernism Postcolonialism

Editors and affiliations

  • Jeremy Tambling
    • 1
  1. 1.LondonUnited Kingdom

About the editors

Jeremy Tambling has been Professor of Comparative Literature at the University of Hong Kong and at the University of Manchester, UK; and is author of over twenty books on literary and cultural theory, many engaged with cities and urban theory.

Bibliographic information


“This large compendium explores the importance of writings about a city to how cities become embedded in the popular imagination. … The handbook abounds with examples of themes and locations. … of interest to those who believe that fiction can be as illuminating as nonfiction, and that the way cities have become inscribed in literature shapes and reflects perceptions of these spaces.” (E&U Environment & Urbanization,, February, 2018)

“The book fundamentally addresses what effect on literature the various great cities around the world have (intrinsically) had. … there is a rich tapestry of depth running throughout this stunning book, that, for anyone remotely interested in literature and/or cities, comes both highly and regally recommended.” (David Marx Book Reviews,, November, 2017)