Whitechapel Gallery

No more dreary spectacle can be found on this earth than the whole of the “awful East,” with its Whitechapel, Hoxton, Spitalfields, Bethnal Green, and Wapping to the East India Docks.

Whitechapel Gallery, Whitechapel, Tower Hamlets, E1

The colour of life is grey and drab. Everything is helpless, hopeless, unrelieved, and dirty.

Mohammad Arif Ali's Rainy Days Image of Lahore, Whitechapel Gallery, Whitechapel, Tower Hamlets, E1
Bath tubs are a thing totally unknown, as mythical as the ambrosia of the gods. The people themselves are dirty, while any attempt at cleanliness becomes howling farce, when it is not pitiful and tragic.

Whitechapel Gallery, Whitechapel, Tower Hamlets, E1

Strange, vagrant odours come drifting along the greasy wind, and the rain, when it falls, is more like grease than water from heaven. 

Whitechapel Gallery, Whitechapel, Tower Hamlets, E1

The very cobblestones are scummed with grease.

Kulwant Roy's Mahatma Gandhi at a railway station, Whitechapel Gallery, Whitechapel, Tower Hamlets, E1

From Jack London’s The People of the Abyss (1903)

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