Introduction to Irish Literature

Members of the Literary Society crowded into the newly refurbished North Block 5 on Tuesday evening at 5.30pm for an Introduction to Irish Literature.

All those studying Pre-U Literature in English in the Lower Sixth attended, accompanied by some interested enthusiasts from the year above. In place of the advertised speaker (who was unfortunately unable to come), Mr Carroll and Mr Gordon from our very own English Department made an excellent presentation, defining the 20th Century as belonging to Ireland in literary terms: with four Irish Nobel Laureates (Yeats: 1923; Shaw: 1925; Beckett: 1969; Heaney: 1995), it is difficult to challenge that definition.

The lively images, interview clips and maps displayed using the new projection facilities helped the audience to begin to understand both the North/South political divide and the rich east/poor west divide, and the handouts, including a range of prose extracts and poetry, gave students a great resource to take away. Most appreciated by students and English beaks alike was the tangible enthusiasm of the presenters and their wide and assured subject knowledge.

Mr Carroll’s singing of Yeats’s ‘Down by the Salley Gardens’, and Mr Gordon’s remarks about Joyce were the icing on a very rich cake, enjoyed by all.

Lavinia Ford
Head of English

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