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.

Philip O’Leary

An Teanga on Tour

Gaelic Ireland’s many encounters with continental European culture

Rí-rá agus rumpy-pumpy

Free of Victorian respectability, Gaeltacht Irish did not develop separate registers of acceptable and ‘dirty’ words. The fact that Mairtín Ó Cadhain wrote about sex scandalised those for whom the Gaeltacht was more holy ground than a place where people actually lived.

Pinning Down the Protean

Alan Titley is probably the most important writer in Irish since Ó Cadhain. It is a daunting challenge to anatomise a writer as various, versatile and sometimes difficult as Titley, but Máirtín Coilféir suggests that one valuable path into understanding his writing might be through the lens of ethics.

We’re No Angels

Máirtín Ó Cadhain’s masterpiece ‘Cré na Cille’, which portrayed the meanness and bitter scurrility of the inhabitants of a Conamara graveyard, lacked an English translation for over sixty years. Now it has two, each, in their different ways, doing the classic work full justice.

Noisy as the Grave

An English rendering of a classic modernist Irish novel has found a translator who can do justice to its playfulness, delight in puns, neologisms, scurrilities and malapropisms and its ability to create and sustain a coherent world through rolling floods of words.