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Into the Dark review: Intriguing book dissects darkness

As night becomes ever more polluted by light, cultural researcher and poet Jacqueline Yallop sets out on an insightful and fascinating journey into the dark. But every insight seems to generate more questions, underlining the slipperiness of her subject

By Elle Hunt

15 November 2023

2HN6JW3 Jim, a gas lamp lighter engineer from British Gas, works in St John Smith Square, Westminster, London. Over 300 gas fuelled lamps still remain in Westminster and around 1,500 gas lamps, dating back 200 years old, continue to light the capital. Picture date: Monday February 14, 2022.

Streetlamps originated in central London more than two centuries ago

Aaron Chown/PA Images/Alamy

Into the Dark
Jacqueline Yallop (Icon Books)

WE ARE all familiar with finding ourselves in the dark – physically, or metaphorically. Especially now, in late autumn in the northern hemisphere, it is part of daily life, when we turn off our bedside light to sleep or open the curtains to discover the gloom outside. But what exactly is the dark?

In Into the Dark: What darkness is and why it matters, Jacqueline Yallop sets out to answer that question and more.…

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