According to George Orwell, the North was 'a strange country'. In a grim, industrial landscape, its working-class inhabitants seem to inhabit a bleak world permanently caught in the piercing gaze of 1930s realism. Stereotypes of the North have been tenacious. This book challenges and analyzes the force of these stereotypes, establishing the strategic and mobile nature of 'the North' and the longlasting effects of literary realism. This reassessment is introduced by Josephine Guy's analysis of the nineteenth-century industrial context and pursues a chronological journey through the worlds of children's literature, George Moore, Arnold Bennett, Ewan MacColl, the Northern local press, W. H. Auden, Alan Sillitoe, Richard Hoggart, Keith Waterhouse, Tony Harrison, Andrea Dunbar, Jim Cartwright, the AHRC Moving Manchester project and Northern cyberpunk. Sean O'Brien takes us to 'The Unknown City: Hull and the North in the poetry of Larkin, Dunn and Disbury'. Join us on this journey to defamiliarize and revitalize the Literary North.