The Yellow-Lighted Bookshop

Writing on the Wall, Graffiti Rebellion and the Making of Eighteenth-Century Britain, Madeleine Pelling

What if walls could talk? For historian Madeleine Pelling, they can – if you know where to look.

A brilliant new cultural history of the long eighteenth century, Writing on the Wall is told through the marks its citizens left behind, bringing into focus lost voices from the highest to the lowest in society. From the centre of London to the islands of the Caribbean, Pelling goes in search of graffiti, evidence of how ordinary people experienced the world-changing events that defined their lives – from political prisoners to sex workers, homesick sailors, Romantic poets and the artisans of the industrial revolution.

Here are lives, loves, triumphs and failures, scratched into the walls of prisons and latrines, chalked up on doors and etched into windows. The names of their creators may be lost to history, but together they tell the real story of Britain’s most rebellious and transformative century.

£25.00

Profile, 2024

Hardback