"The drb sustains a level of commentary on Irish and international matters that no other journal in Ireland and few elsewhere can reach. It deserves all the support that can be given it." X
Space to Think, a new book celebrating ten years of the Dublin Review of Books More Information 

    Half The Man

    Thomas Fitzgerald
    A new biography of Patrick Pearse neglects the important cultural and educational sides of his achievement and fails to build on or even engage with previous studies of the man who is probably the most interesting of the 1916 rebels.

    Before the Flood

    Connal Parr
    A new memoir recalls an artistic and political controversy which rocked Northern Ireland more than fifty years ago, at a time when its labour traditions were still strong and the Northern Ireland Labour Party attracted a quarter of the vote and the loyalty of much of Belfast’s working class.

    The Real Revolutionary

    Leo Keohane
    James Connolly may have made common cause with the other leaders of the 1916 Rising but his aims were quite different. What he wanted was not just the expulsion of the British from Ireland, not just some form of statist socialism, but the overthrow of the entire economic system.

    One Bold Deed of Open Treason

    Angus Mitchell
    The trial of Roger Casement took place at the height of the First World War, when the fate of the British empire hung in the balance. Casement was hell-bent on destroying that empire; it is hard to measure the level of hatred levelled at him by those who wished to protect it.

    On a Wing and a Prayer

    Patrick Gillan
    In 1978 John Zachary DeLorean made a successful pitch for British state aid to start production in West Belfast of what he said would be the “world’s most ethical mass production car”. There was very little that was ethical about what followed.

    Rebellion of the Intellect

    David Blake Knox
    In the Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, published one hundred years ago this year, the hero’s father, Simon Dedalus, describes the Irish as a ‘priestridden Godforsaken race’. That claim may once have had validity, but it does not any longer ‑ at least as far as the ‘priestridden’ part is concerned.

    The Great Incendiary

    Tom Wall
    The Great Incendiary
    A new study of James Larkin takes some of the shine off his reputation; still, plaster saints are no longer in vogue. Big Jim’s vision was fundamentally moral. His gift to workers will be remembered and he can afford to be taken down a peg or two and still tower above.

    Doing The Locomotion

    Iggy McGovern
    Dubliner Dionysius Lardner couldn’t wangle a job at Trinity despite his remarkable gifts of clarity and exposition, but he was nevertheless a successful publisher in England and criss-crossed America, addressing huge audiences as one of the great scientific popularisers of his era.

    The Big World Spins

    Ronan Fanning
    Ireland in the revolutionary and Civil War years seemed to be much taken up with its own affairs. But Dubliners flocked to a lavish new picture palace, attended a world title fight and, in spite of warnings of the moral dangers, enthusiastically danced to jazz rhythms in Dawson Street.

    The Commemoration Trap

    John Swift
    All political parties cannibalise the past selectively for facts and arguments deemed useful to safeguarding and advancing their future fortunes. This is normal and to be expected. But what is produced in this way is not history, which is a discipline whose goal is understanding.