Saturday, 13 April 2013

The Lonely Londoners, Sam Selvon - An A-Z post

Sam Selvon was born in Trinidad in 1923 to East Indian parents. He was educated in San Fernando but left when he was 15.

Picture from kevinfromcanada.wordpress.c...
From 1940-1945 he worked as a wireless operator with the Royal Naval Reserve and then moved to the Port of Spain, where he started work as a reporter for the Trinidad Guardian. It was while he was here that he began writing his stories.

He moved over to London in the 1950s and then finally to Alberta, Canada in the late 1970s. He died of a heart attack in 1994 on a final return trip to Trinidad.

The Lonely Londoners was published in 1956, and was probably the first work of literature to focus on poor and working-class blacks.
The story follows West Indian characters in post-World War II London, characters that are part of the Windrush Generation, when 493 passengers arrived from Jamaica to start a new life.

The story follows them on their daily lives in London, as they go to and try to find work. There is one central character called Moses Aloetta who is the unifying central character, who has been a veteran in London for ten years. The characters gather at his home on a regular basis to swap stories, but he finds that as he gets older he grows more homesick with each passing day.

The theme of study for The Lonely Londoners is memory and migration, following those that have traveled so far to the UK from their homeland.

A to Z Challenge [2013]


This post is part of the A-Z Blogging Challenge. To get involved and check out other blogs taking part just click here. You won't be disappointed!



  1. An interesting story. Many who leave their home countries miss other members of their family and as a result, miss their birth home.

    I'd never heard of this book,so thanks for sharing it.

  2. I hadn't heard of this book before but it sounds interesting. I might just look out for it.

    A great A-Z Challenge.