Ireland Through the Looking-Glass: Flann O'Brien, Myles na gCopaleen and Irish Cultural Debate

Ireland Through the Looking-Glass: Flann O'Brien, Myles na gCopaleen and Irish Cultural Debate

by Carol Taaffe


Choose Expedited Shipping at checkout for guaranteed delivery by Thursday, September 19


Ireland Through the Looking Glass explores O'Nolan's broad-ranging humor (as novelist and newspaper columnist) in its cultural contexts. What emerges from this fresh perspective is an original portrait of him as a writer whose work was at once in conflict with, and wholly indebted tom, the charged cultural politics of the new state.

This is the first book to thoroughly combine both aspects of his literary career, illuminating how his episodic novels relate to the journalism which he wrote throughout his life. It demonstrates how his recurrent preoccupation with the persona and role of the author was as much shaped by the difficult position of the Irish writer in the 1930s and 1940s as it was by literary modernism. Each chapter within the book focuses on a different aspect of O'Nolan's multi-faceted career, charting his development from a playful literary humorist to a peculiarly astute cultural critic.

This is the first book to demonstrate in detail what O'Nolan's varying blend of parody, satire and surreal humor owed to the peculiar cultural climate of the mid-twentieth century Ireland. By exploring the links between comedy and culture, it exposes the humorist's curiously ambivalent response to the culture of the new state, and particularly to the position of the writer within it.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781859184424
Publisher: Cork University Press
Publication date: 11/30/2008
Pages: 286
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Carol Taaffe Senior Tutor in the School of English, Trinity College, Dublin.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements; Textual Note; Introduction: Ireland Through the Looking-Glass; 1) The cult of the Author: Brian, Flann and Myles; 2) The Genesis of At Swim-Two-Birds; 3) ‘Nonsense is a New Sense’: The Third Policeman in 1939; 4) Irish Myles: Cruiskeen Lawn and An Béal Bocht; 5) Newspaper Wars: Cruiskeen Lawn in the 1940s; 6) ‘The Dublin Character’: Plays and Later Work; Afterword; Notes and References; Bibliography; Index.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews