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

Majoritarian Futures

Ivan Krastev
Europe’s migration crisis involves not just the movement of people from outside Europe to the old continent, or from poorer states to richer ones, but also the movement of voters away from the centre, and of the displacement of the left-right division by one between internationalists and nativists.
May 6, 2017, 17:53 PM

They’re Selling Postcards of the Stoning

Jeremy Kearney
When Bob Dylan blasted out his electric version of “Maggie’s Farm” at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965, he was, for many, committing sacrilege. Pete Seeger, who at the time epitomised American folk music tradition, was said to have called for an axe to cut the cables.
Mar 8, 2017, 13:40 PM

Hidden Persuaders

Farrel Corcoran
We can have democracy or we can have great concentrations of wealth, but not both, ‘people’s attorney’ Louis Brandeis warned. A new study shows the extent to which the super-rich were prepared to go to block Obama’s ambition to foster progressive change through government action.
Mar 8, 2017, 13:32 PM

Language in Orbit

Catherine Phil MacCarthy
The governing thread in a new selected Muldoon is a life lived from his upbringing in the village of Moy on the Tyrone-Armagh border to Princeton. The work engages concerns both private and public, while Muldoon’s poems address an increasingly wide audience. 
Mar 8, 2017, 13:25 PM

A Canine Resurrection

David Blake Knox
The ancient Irish Wolfhound was chosen as an emblem for the Abbey Theatre and a mascot for the Irish Volunteers. But in fact the dog we know as the Wolfhound is far from ancient and far from ‘pure’. And perhaps, as such, it is not an unsuitable symbol for the Irish ‘race’.
Mar 8, 2017, 13:05 PM

Time to Listen

Liam Hennessy
Mental function is immensely complicated and our understanding of it still in its relative infancy; in Ireland our first psychiatric institutions date back only to the early eighteenth century. Could it be that it is the human brain or mind, and not space, that is the final frontier?
Mar 7, 2017, 11:52 AM

Changing Direction

Frank Barry
Economic stagnation in the Ireland of the 1950s persuaded many that a different economic course must be tried out. The name of TK Whitaker is intimately associated with the new departure, but the changes that occurred did not exactly match the recipe he initially offered.
Mar 7, 2017, 11:42 AM

Real Americans

Daniel Geary
Liberals in the US have been told they must understand the grievances of Trump voters. Yet it is difficult to conclude that many of them are anything other than the political enemies of social solidarity, who believe that only ‘winners’ deserve the basic necessities of a good life.
Mar 7, 2017, 11:37 AM

Misery and Improvement

John Swift
The European Enlightenment made its mark in Ireland as well as elsewhere. In the middle decades of the eighteenth century there was optimism about improvement and progress, while at the same time poor harvests, famine and disease took off between 13 and 20 per cent of the population.
Mar 7, 2017, 11:33 AM

A Life with Opinions

Andrew Carpenter
Should a book which contains passages clearly the product of imaginative re-creation be marketed as a biography? Jonathan Swift’s contradictions encourage many different kinds of response, but a work written in a highly imaginative style should perhaps be described as commentary.
Mar 7, 2017, 11:19 AM

Cracks in the Mould

Thomas O’Neill
Ireland’s 2011 general election saw big changes, with the collapse of Fianna Fáil in particular. In 2016 we saw Fine Gael and Labour weaken, a partial recovery for Fianna Fáil and progress for Sinn Féin and the far left. It may be, however, that the prospects for continuing dramatic change are not strong.
Mar 7, 2017, 11:00 AM

The Evil That Men Do

Frank Armstrong
Dostoyevsky’s idea of collective responsibility for human error is as important now as it ever was, while his message of compassion for all life on Earth remains a challenge. He was also a visionary, who intuited the terrible cruelties that would soon reign ascendant in his country.
Mar 7, 2017, 10:18 AM

A Centenary Poem

Harry Clifton
In 1917, the French diplomat and poet Alexis Leger, who published under the name Saint-John Perse, wrote the long poem ‘Anabasis’, a meditation on the rise and fall of civilisations, after a visit to an old temple in the Xinchan mountains.
Mar 7, 2017, 10:08 AM

Mishearing Voices

Fritz Senn
Artists are free to take liberties and twist facts in presenting a fictional account of the lives of actual people, but the dialogue in a novel based on James, Nora, Lucia and Giorgio Joyce does not sound very much like any conversations we might have expected them to have.
Mar 7, 2017, 09:46 AM

Look, It’s Simple

Brian Trench
At an early stage of a new popularising book on quantum physics a crucial paradox is introduced: that ‘the more we discover, the more we understand that what we don’t know is greater than what we know’.
Mar 7, 2017, 09:35 AM

The Note for Grief

Liza Costello
Each year Dermot Healy built a stone wall on the beach near his home, only for it to be washed away by the sea. Loss, his poems seem to say, is an intrinsic aspect of our world, and inseparable from its material reality.
Mar 7, 2017, 09:30 AM

Is cuimhin liom

Patrick Gillan
The highlight of the state’s celebration of 1916 came on Easter Sunday, when it was established beyond doubt that the title Óglaigh na hÉireann belongs to the body that led the march past the GPO and not to bogus armies parading in balaclavas, a timely affirmation of the legitimacy of the state.
Mar 7, 2017, 09:19 AM