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 47, December 16th, 2013

Issue 47, December 16th, 2013

A Time In Between

Éadaoín Lynch writes on the British literature of the Second World War. Writers such as Roald Dahl wrote directly about the experience of killing in combat, and the godlike power of mechanised warfare. The dominant mode of writing death and killing lay in understatement, detachment and voyeurism.

Cold War Reinvented

It is more than a little depressing to contemplate the possibility that the old cold war narrative which restricted the potential of so many individuals and peoples over the latter half of the twentieth century has given way to a new overarching narrative ‑ equally laden with oppressive potential for anyone in the way ‑ that of multipolarity versus unipolarity.

The Lost Chief

The decision to abandon Parnell in the belief that sacrificing him would secure home rule lost Ireland a great leader and left in his place a myth of the tragic and romantic hero. Those who had made the decision overestimated the value of pragmatism for those with a weak hand.

Back in the GDR

Elizabeth Shaw, born in Belfast in 1920 to a bank manager father from Sligo, became a celebrated children’s author and book illustrator in postwar East Germany and a member of the state’s cultural elite. A primary school is named after her in Berlin.

From Salonika to Soloheadbeg

We may disagree over how best to commemorate the First World War, but we should recognise that it fundamentally changed Ireland, creating the conditions that made possible the revolutionary events of 1916 to 1923.

Captain Mighthavebeen

The mid-1960s saw a relaxation of old certainties among both communities in Northern Ireland. The unionist leader Terence O’Neill was conscious that it was necessary to offer some remedy to the discrimination that Catholics suffered, but even his mild measures of reform did not win majority support within his own community.


Though he fell out with the temper of the times in the later 1960s, in the light of history Bellow will be a judged a great American novelist, and Herzog, cerebral and earthy, imbued with two thousand years of learning yet crackling with wiseass Chicago wit, will be accounted his masterpiece.

The Goggle Box

Television has been accused of dumbing down the population almost since it was invented. For TS Eliot even the word itself was ugly and foreign. Noel Coward thought it ‘hideous and horrid’, while those on the left feared it would seduce the working classes and liquidate their sense of class solidarity.