I am so at home in Dublin, more than any other city, that I feel it has always been familiar to me. It took me years to see through its soft charm to its bitter prickly kernel - which I quite like too.

Issue 116, November 2019

A coming of age

The diary of the woman who was to become the wife of the prominent Irish Party politician John Dillon provides an intriguing insight into the social circles of substantial Catholic families in London and Ireland and the political alliances, and splits, in the nationalist movement.

Attentive Living

To pay attention to one thing is to resist paying attention to other things; it means constantly denying and thwarting provocations outside the sphere of one’s attention in order to be able to concentrate on what is essential.

Warm words from the dreary steeples

Can one still enjoy, after several decades, the stories of Benedict Kiely, empathise with their rural themes and collude with their soft sectarian notions in the aftermath of our thirty years’ war? The answer to all three questions is an enthusiastic yes.

Law is Politics

There has been no shortage of Palestinian legal initiatives, and no shortage of good Palestinian lawyers. What there has been a shortage of since the late 1980s, when the single democratic state project was formally abandoned, is political vision from the Palestinian leadership.

Charlatans and Fools

The early chapters of this book are a primer in identifying logical flaws, fallacies, rhetorical sleight-of-hand, bias, abuse of statistics and outright manipulation in the presentation of arguments against evidence produced by science.

Ciaran Carson 1948-2019

Ciaran Carson drew on the supple lines of narrative, melody and rhythm that run through traditional music. As with other great modernist poets, he brought poetry beyond word-music into a dizzying and organic dance; for rhythm, the closest to him in the past century was Fred Astaire.