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Space to Think, a new book celebrating ten years of the Dublin Review of Books More Information 

    Skimming the Cream off the Orphans’ Milk

    Pauline Hall
    Gerald O’Donovan left the priesthood due to strained relations with his conservative and philistine bishop. In his novel about the fortunes of the provincial middle class Curtin sisters, he indicts late Victorian Catholic values, warped by the privileging of religious vocations over marriage.
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    Their Own Medicine

    Pauline Hall
    Matthew Pearl’s 2003 bestseller ‘The Dante Club’ is set at the close of the American Civil War when Boston is shaken by a series of gruesome murders which seem to replicate the ‘contrapasso’ punishments of Dante’s ‘Inferno’. A group of eminent scholars must track down the killer.
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    A Terrible Thing

    Pauline Hall
    Iris Murdoch’s Easter 1916 novel ‘The Red and the Green’ (1965) expresses some of her own early Marxist and feminist attitudes, as when a character asserts that ‘being a woman is like being Irish. Everyone says you’re important and nice, but you take second place all the same’.
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    A Cooling Cinder

    Pauline Hall
    A fictional portrait of Dublin in the years leading up to the Great War and 1916 is brimming with ideas and has a great deal of historical interest, even if its author’s ill-digested anger at his enemies and overschematic approach to characterisation may reduce the artistry.
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    Awkward Voices

    Pauline Hall
    A new biographical study focuses on four nationalist intellectuals who at first seemed to support the Easter Rising and the War of Independence but afterwards questioned if it had been worthwhile: Eimar O’Duffy, PS O’Hegarty, George Russell (AE) and Desmond Ryan.
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    Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang

    Pauline Hall
    The first of a series of essays on fictions inspired by the 1916 Easter Rising looks at a work by Raymond Queneau, a French disciple of Joyce whose total experience of Ireland, he has admitted was a short stopover at Shannon Airport on the way to the United States.
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