MLA Platinum Award Press Release

The Knowledge: Background information when reading The Book of Dave

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The Book of Dave

A Novel

by Will Self

The Book of Dave by Will Self X
The Book of Dave by Will Self
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     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Nov 2006, 416 pages
    Paperback:
    Nov 2007, 512 pages

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The Knowledge

This article relates to The Book of Dave

Print Review

It takes a central London cab driver an average of 34 months to gainThe Knowledge required to drive a licensed London taxi. Before they can receive their license they must know every street and the route between every street in a 6 mile radius of Charing Cross station (that's about 113 square miles) - and they need to be able to describe the best route to take dependent on the traffic conditions In addition they have to know all the points of interest and important landmarks along the route! Only 1/4 of those who start the course complete their training to become London cab drivers

In 2000 two researchers at University College London published findings showing that London cab drivers have a larger hippocampus than other people (the hippocampus is the part of the brain associated with navigation in birds and animals).

Arguably the most famous winner of Mastermind (a very challenging British quiz show) was Fred Housego, a London cabbie who won in 1980.

Filed under Places, Cultures & Identities

This "beyond the book article" relates to The Book of Dave. It originally ran in December 2006 and has been updated for the November 2007 paperback edition. Go to magazine.

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