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.

Home Issue 27, January 14th, 2013

Issue 27, January 14th, 2013

Understanding the Serbs

David Ralph’s recent essay on the war in Bosnia merely added to the mountain of incomprehension that British journalists raised about the region’s war.

The Barbarians Strike

The so-called Night of the Broken Glass, which the Hitler government represented as a spontaneous irruption of anger, was a cynical and carefully choreographed attack on Germany’s Jewish population with the aim of demoralising them and despoiling them of their possessions.

They fly so high … They fade and die

As we try to recover from the bubble and bust we might ask whether we as a nation take more risks than others, or to what extent gambling is an entrenched characteristic of the Irish.

‘A Full Life, A Good End’

Whatever about questions of mandate or democratic legitimacy, the bravery of the insurgents who fought in 1916, and of those who were executed for their role as leaders of the Rising, is beyond dispute.

Can an Intellectual be a Saint?

Joseph Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVI, is best seen not as a renegade liberal but as a sympathiser with a very different movement, which sought to break the grip of Thomism and return to the early sources of the Church.

Madwomen in the Attic

A novelistic exploration of Miss Havisham before Dickens got hold of her irresistibly recalls Jean Rhys’s brilliant work in the classic prequel genre.

Exuberantly Pluralist

George O’Brien’s impressive survey of fifty years of the Irish novel is inclusive, eclectic and insistently diverse.

Soundtrack to the Century

For fifty years, Duke Ellington was America’s most important and innovative musical figure, achieving distinction as a composer, arranger, songwriter, bandleader and pianist, and writing and producing timeless music of every kind.

Dispatches from the Island

Jonathan Franzen inextricably links writing to survival, to that which sustains life and keeps boredom and demise at bay.

As Fresh as a Cliché

We strive for originality, but perhaps old phrases should, like Mae West’s discarded lovers, be given a new chance with someone else.