The Wisdom of the Folly: Co-operative Diversity in Ben Aaronovitch’s Rivers of London Series

In: London post-2010 in British Literature and Culture

Partly police procedural and partly urban fantasy, Ben Aaronovitch’s Rivers of London series also comments on ecological issues, class, race and struggles over the use of urban space. The novels champion a cooperative diversity, allowing for difference but also stressing the need for connections: Aaronovitch ‘reassembles the social’ as mutually enabling networks between people and things. The engagement with contemporary events in London history – for instance the controversy over the refurbishment or demolition of 1970s sink estates – does more than voice frustration about town planning or offer an alternative history – it superimposes a holistic view on current urban disputes.