WAMU 88.5 : The Diane Rehm Show

Ruth Richardson: "Dickens & the Workhouse: Oliver Twist and the London Poor"

This year marks the bicentennial of Charles Dickens' birth. For decades, scholars have looked to the novelist’s childhood to explain his pre-occupation with reform. One historian claims she has found a clue that stayed hidden for nearly two centuries. The Old Strand Workhouse in London was slated for demolition in 2010 when Ruth Richardson joined the campaign to save the building. It was then that she made a connection others seem to have missed: As a child, Charles Dickens had lived just a few doors down from the workhouse that was probably the inspiration for his novel, Oliver Twist. A discussion about Charles Dickens, the workhouse, and the London poor.

Read An Excerpt

Excerpt: "Dickens and the Workhouse: Oliver Twist and the London Poor" by Ruth Richardson. Reprinted by permission of Oxford University Press. Copyright 2012 by Ruth Richardson. All rights reserved:

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The aquaculture project would be the same size as New York's Central Park and produce 11 million pounds of yellowtail and sea bass each year. But some people see it as an aquatic "factory farm."
WAMU 88.5

Europe's Ongoing Migrant And Refugee Crisis And The Future Of Open Borders

The Austria-Hungary border has become the latest pressure point in Europe's ongoing migrant crisis. An update on the huge influx of migrants and refugees from the Middle East and Africa and the future of open borders within the E.U.

WAMU 88.5

Environmental Outlook: How to Build Smarter Transportation And More Livable Cities

A new report says the traffic in the U.S. is the worst it has been in years. Yet, some urban transportation experts say there's reason to be optimistic. They point to revitalized city centers, emerging technology and the investment in alternative methods of transportation. A conversation about how we get around today, and might get around tomorrow.

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