Reading Room Only: Memoir of a Radical Bibliophile
Published by Five Leaves Publications
The perfect companion for all book lovers and including photographs throughout.
Phil Cohen – at one time "Dr John", the leading figure of London hippy squatters in 1969, and erstwhile Professor of Cultural Studies at the University of East London – was born in Bloomsbury and never really moved away. The famous square sand famous writers powered his imagination as a child, while, after his years in the counterculture, the British Museum’s Reading Room provided a second home.
This memoir continues through Cohen’s life, discussing book collecting, the pleasures of browsing and the need for bookshops. Building a personal library is a long way from setting fire to books as part of a John Latham "event" but, as a child, a drop-out and a professor, Phil Cohen's life has always been one of books.
Phil Cohen's books have been mostly in the field of urban, ethnic and cultural studies, including Knuckle Sandwich: growing up in the working class city (Penguin) and Rethinking the Youth Question (Palgrave) and, in January 2013, a study of East London and the Olympics, On the Wrong Side of theTracks.