• arifalfaraz

Do you live in the Jago?

Updated: Apr 29, 2019


Review's Prologue


Whenever and wherever I read a book review, I feel cheated. I feel like nobody realises or what it is worse, everyone does but prefer not to say anything about it with the fear of being pointed out. They live in their own Jago where it is impossible to climb up, where the chains are impossible to remove. Also, impossible words, and impossible concepts for impossible people.

I do not need a summary of the book! They read the book, select the main points, WRITE THEM DOWN, and give a brief explanation -not even a critic-.

I am sorry Jagos, but I will be the one who tries to escape this dark place, where -for sure- I will be punished for. Like in the Jago, where no evil deed goes unpunished, I will. IGNORANCE. But Truth is more important than my own self.



Review of: A Child of the Jago by Arthur Morrison


1896's dark novel set in London, the Jago (the Old Nichol in Shoreditch).


The Jago.

A place.

A dark place.

The darkest.


Iconcious-consciously, Othello's evil "friend" comes to my mind and not just because of the similarity of their names. The Jago is evil too, and so alive as any of us. Full of shadows, of hidden corners where if you get there you are lost. It is a maze with unclimbable walls and invisible, locked doors. The endless nightmare where you run, but your legs are so dense that no matter how much you extend your arm, you will never get the light.


Dicky Perrot enters his nothing-like-wonderland's-hole to encounters very different things than our beloved Alice. Violence is a theme, so important as in the play The Lieutenant of Inishmore by Martin McDonagh wherein the struggle for a united Ireland; violence means have long overtaken legitimate ends. Not so different as in the Jago -which is the real main character of the book, the slum itself-. Violence is the only payback for violence.

Revenge: every deed will be avenged, and the default method is violence. Greek Tragedy comes right to my mind; there is no hero in the Jago though.

The smell helps us to get imbued in the lowest of the low, shouting at us how hard it is to overcome your status if you start at the bottom. The same hopelessness that a young chap has today if they are born in a non-privileged place. There is no blood on the streets, but there is in their soul. Since children, they are raised with the idea that everything is impossible.


This book could not be more relevant nowadays. But -of course- we prefer to think that this is just literature, an exaggeration of reality...


The world is a sophisticated Jago where the liberals want to change, and the right-wingers want to maintain, saying; of course, that everything is fine.


A Jago in the end.

In the end, a Jago?


#darkplace #jago #achildofthejago #tragedy #victorianslum #theoldnichol #shoreditch

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