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

Hard and Soft

Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin
The virtues of Jane Clarke’s first verse collection include a broad sympathy that never usurps the voice of the other, a pleasure in ingenious objects and crafts that is deftly transmitted and a clarity which does not deny mystery but makes room for it.
Mar 6, 2016, 15:52 PM

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.
Mar 6, 2016, 15:43 PM


Keith Payne
The answer then as to why tell these women’s stories, why write this, why read this, are the poems themselves. As with all the important questions, the questions that need to be asked and often can only be formulated by a poet, the poem is the answer.
Mar 6, 2016, 15:38 PM

Voices from Elsewhere

Tom Tracey
Rob Doyle’s new collection demands to be read if for no other reason than to observe what the new generation of talent is beginning to produce by way of a tradition moving steadily away from McGahern’s Ireland into a foreignness no less real for being in no way green.
Mar 6, 2016, 15:33 PM

The First and Last Word

Aiden O’Reilly
The absence of a plot will no doubt annoy some readers of Tom McCarthy’s new novel, but others will barely notice in their search for a thematic unity to its various obsessions and recurring imagery.
Mar 6, 2016, 15:23 PM

The High-Wire Man

Enda O’Doherty
Joseph Roth took stylistic risks in his journalism, but they almost always paid off. He became one of the most highly respected contributors to the German press – until 1933, when, as an anti-Nazi and a Jew, he suddenly found himself unemployable. He died in exile in France in 1939.
Mar 6, 2016, 13:50 PM

Speaking for Ireland

John Bradley
For a state embroiled in conflict, the crucial time for reflection on future possibilities is not when peace has arrived but during the final stages of the conflict, when a clear identification of the possibilities about to be opened up is essential in order to drive the practical bargaining.
Mar 6, 2016, 13:38 PM

Art And Power

Carol Taaffe
Dmitri Shostakovich achieved success and fame as a composer early in life, and that may have made him particularly vulnerable. He had been one of the most prominent artists in Russia all through the worst years of Stalin’s rule. The consequence was a life lived in fear.
Mar 6, 2016, 13:32 PM

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.
Mar 6, 2016, 13:25 PM

The City As Hero

Gerard Smyth
If there is a ‘larger than life’ character in Lia Mills’s novel ‘Fallen' it is the city of Dublin itself, whose street names are evoked with a Joycean reverence. This makes it a peculiarly appropriate choice to be chosen as this year’s One City, One Book
Mar 6, 2016, 13:16 PM

McGahern And Tradition

Denis Sampson
A new study of John McGahern is grounded in a capacious knowledge of his fiction, his reading, his manuscripts and notes, and other critics’ work. It will allow us to assess his enduring reputation fifty years after the career began and a decade after its end.
Mar 6, 2016, 13:11 PM

A Terrible Thing

Pauline Hall
Iris Murdoch’s Easter 1916 novel ‘The Red and the Green’ (1965) expresses some of her own early Marxist and feminist attitudes, as when a character asserts that ‘being a woman is like being Irish. Everyone says you’re important and nice, but you take second place all the same’.
Mar 6, 2016, 13:00 PM

Leading on Climate Change

Paul Gillespie
The outlook after the COP21 summit is certainly better than after Copenhagen in 2009. But there is still a mismatch between the EU’s declaration of climate leadership and the resources it devotes to exercising that with the huge states of China and India.
Mar 6, 2016, 12:54 PM

He’s Not There

David Scott
A new biography of Marcel Proust which appears as part of a series called ‘Jewish Lives’ fails to tell us very much about its subject and does not seem to be on safe ground either with the linguistic, historical or cultural background.
Mar 6, 2016, 12:46 PM