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

    The Spring-Time of the World

    Brandon Yen
    In 1792 Tom Paine wrote that whatever shape summer might take it was ‘not difficult to perceive that the spring is begun’. If the French Revolution did not fulfil the radicals’ hopes, these early years left an enduring legacy to Wordsworth, making him the great poet of feeling and hope.
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    Rory of the Hill

    Kerron Ó Luain
    Ribbonism was more resourceful and endured longer as a tradition than any other Irish secret society during the nineteenth century. With their Catholic and conspiratorial composition, the Ribbon societies played constantly on the minds of British officials and much of Protestant Ireland.
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    That Damnable Invention

    James McNaney
    The British feel a certain detachment from the North, born of distance. At worst this is antipathy: Diarmaid Ferriter cites Thatcher’s famous disdain for both sides. Even when Conservatives attempt a revival of the old ‘conservative and unionist’ tradition, it comes across as a bit clunky.
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    What Was Lost

    Jim Smyth
    ‘Declinist’ accounts of English history are not always consistent, but the outlines are clear: a once ‘organic’ community succumbed to commerce, scientific rationalism and, most corrosively, industrialisation. A vital common culture gave way to a cheapened mass society.
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    Sipping from the Honey-Pot

    Fergus O’Ferrall
    Oliver Goldsmith was ‘an enlightened anti-imperialist’ grappling with the emerging modernity of the industrial and agricultural revolutions. His ethical universalism did not preclude cultural diversity or respect for diverse cultures existing on their own terms.
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    Prologue to Forgetting

    Sarah O’Brien
    The willingness to dream, to give herself over to a flood of memories is ultimately what distinguishes the inevitably innocent memoir of Nora O’Connor, who left Ireland in 1907, from Ian Maleney’s masterfully doubtful essays. For at the base of Maleney’s anxiety is a mistrust of memory.
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    Taking Liberties

    Ross Moore
    Ciaran Carson’s work has developed from the well-crafted poetry of his first collection to the digressive, long-lined collection The Irish For No. His explorations of liberty in The Twelfth of Never took their own liberties with temporal, conceptual and even grammatical sense.
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    A Narrow Sea, by Jonathan Bardon

    A history of the interactions between Ireland and Scotland over two millennia, told in a series of 120 episodes, ranges entertainingly from the Roman governor Agricola’s plan to invade Ireland from Scotland to 21st century pitch invasions at Ibrox and Celtic Park.
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    To Live Like a Moor, Olivia Remie Constable

    The cultural absorption or lack of it of large immigrant communities may not have predictable outcomes. The relationship between culture and politics, it seems, is not straightforward and drawing political conclusions from cultural practices is an inexact business.
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    The One Hundred Best Novels in Translation, by Boyd Tonkin

    A new anthology of works of fiction translated into English is modest about its ambitions and disclaims any ambition to be ‘canonical’. Nevertheless it is a smartly executed work, which invites us to fill in some gaps in our literary education and ‘get out a bit more’.
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