The Uncommercial Traveller


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(4 stars; 2 reviews)

The Uncommercial Traveller is a collection of literary sketches and reminiscences written by Charles Dickens. In 1859 Dickens founded a new journal called All the Year Round and the Uncommercial Traveller articles would be among his main contributions. He seems to have chosen the title and persona of the Uncommercial Traveller as a result of a speech he gave on the 22 December 1859 to the Commercial Travellers' School London in his role as honorary chairman and treasurer. The persona sits well with a writer who liked to travel, not only as a tourist, but also to research and report what he found; visiting Europe, America and giving book readings throughout Britain. He does not seem content to rest late in his career when he had attained wealth and comfort and continued travelling locally, walking the streets of London in the mould of the flâneur, a 'gentleman stroller of city streets'. He often suffered from insomnia and his night-time wanderings gave him an insight into some of the hidden aspects of Victorian London, details of which he also incorporated into his novels. (Summary by Wikipedia) (15 hr 36 min)

Chapters

01 - CHAPTER I - HIS GENERAL LINE OF BUSINESS 2:58 Read by Jonathan Henry
02 - CHAPTER II -THE SHIPWRECK 42:22 Read by Bill Mosley
03 - CHAPTER III - WAPPING WORKHOUSE 27:04 Read by Patrick Wallace
04 - CHAPTER IV - TWO VIEWS OF A CHEAP THEATRE 30:00 Read by Mike Pelton
05 - CHAPTER V - POOR MERCANTILE JACK 31:24 Read by William Tomcho
06 - CHAPTER VI - REFRESHMENTS FOR TRAVELLERS 26:57 Read by Rick Saffery
07 - CHAPTER VII - TRAVELLING ABROAD 30:14 Read by William Tomcho
08 - CHAPTER VIII - THE GREAT TASMANIA’S CARGO 23:27 Read by William Tomcho
09 - CHAPTER IX - CITY OF LONDON CHURCHES 28:12 Read by William Tomcho
10 - CHAPTER X - SHY NEIGHBOURHOODS 22:26 Read by John Leonard
11 - CHAPTER XI - TRAMPS 40:50 Read by Bill Mosley
12 - CHAPTER XII - DULLBOROUGH TOWN 27:55 Read by Nicole Lee
13 - CHAPTER XIII - NIGHT WALKS 28:15 Read by Jeanie
14 - CHAPTER XIV - CHAMBERS 30:36 Read by Adam Doughty
15 - CHAPTER XV - NURSE’S STORIES 30:35 Read by Mike Pelton
16 - CHAPTER XVI - ARCADIAN LONDON 23:20 Read by John Trevithick
17 - CHAPTER XVII - THE ITALIAN PRISONER 25:46 Read by John Trevithick
18 - CHAPTER XVIII - THE CALAIS NIGHT MAIL 19:46 Read by Lara Martin
19 - CHAPTER XIX - SOME RECOLLECTIONS OF MORTALITY 24:14 Read by Anna Simon
20 - CHAPTER XX - BIRTHDAY CELEBRATIONS 19:43 Read by Rick Saffery
21 - CHAPTER XXI - THE SHORT-TIMERS 32:26 Read by Rick Saffery
22 - CHAPTER XXII - BOUND FOR THE GREAT SALT LAKE 39:34 Read by Bill Mosley
23 - CHAPTER XXIII - THE CITY OF THE ABSENT 23:39 Read by Rick Saffery
24 - CHAPTER XXIV - AN OLD STAGE-COACHING HOUSE 20:19 Read by Richard Carpenter
25 - CHAPTER XXV - THE BOILED BEEF OF NEW ENGLAND 20:14 Read by Kalynda
26 - CHAPTER XXVI - CHATHAM DOCKYARD 24:33 Read by Paul Stephens
27 - CHAPTER XXVII - IN THE FRENCH-FLEMISH COUNTRY 34:28 Read by Adam Doughty
28 - CHAPTER XXVIII - MEDICINE MEN OF CIVILISATION 24:05 Read by Pamela Krantz
29 - CHAPTER XXIX - TITBULL’S ALMS-HOUSES 26:57 Read by Paul Stephens
30 - CHAPTER XXX - THE RUFFIAN 22:26 Read by Rick Saffery
31 - CHAPTER XXXI - ABOARD SHIP 27:33 Read by Pamela Krantz
32 - CHAPTER XXXII - A SMALL STAR IN THE EAST 26:43 Read by Deborah Brabyn
33 - CHAPTER XXXIII - A LITTLE DINNER IN AN HOUR 16:17 Read by Snapdragon
34 - CHAPTER XXXIV - MR. BARLOW 15:08 Read by Snapdragon
35 - CHAPTER XXXV - ON AN AMATEUR BEAT 25:01 Read by Bill Mosley
36 - CHAPTER XXXVI - A FLY-LEAF IN A LIFE 10:44 Read by Snapdragon
37 - CHAPTER XXXVII - A PLEA FOR TOTAL ABSTINENCE 10:38 Read by Snapdragon

Reviews

I enjoyed it.

(4 stars)

This is a series of magazine articles, I assume, as they are short pieces and he specialized in that form. They purport to be his reminiscences on minor events he has seen while traveling, although their veracity is impossible to confirm. They tend toward his usual themes, poverty, the suffering of the hidden underclass, the way terrible things happen just out of sight in Victorian England.