Diverse voices

This book focuses on the drama and poetry published since 1990. It also reflects upon related forms of creative work in this period, including film and the visual and performing arts. The book discusses some of the most topical issues which have emerged in Irish theatre since 1990. It traces the significance of the home in the poetry of Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin and Vona Groarke. The book also focuses on the reconfigurations of identity, and the complex intersections of nationality, gender and race in contemporary Ireland. It shows how Roddy Doyle's return to the repressed gives articulation to those left behind by globalisation. The book then examines the ways in which post-Agreement Northern fiction negotiates its bitter legacies. It also examines how the activity of creating art in a time of violence brings about an anxiety regarding the artist's role, and how it calls into question the ability to re-present atrocity. The book further explores the consideration of politics and ethics in Irish drama since 1990. It talks about the swirling abundance of themes and trends in contemporary Irish fiction and autobiography. The book shows that writing in the Irish Republic and in the North has begun to accommodate an increasing diversity of voices which address themselves not only to issues preoccupying their local audiences, but also to wider geopolitical concerns.

An introduction to the book
Colin Coulter

Irish culture – albeit highly hybridised ones – have the potential to reach a global audience. The burgeoning cultural appeal of the Irish Republic has been underlined further by the changing fortunes of the national capital. If we were to go back fifteen years or so, the reputation that Dublin held among foreigners was essentially that of a fairly drab and unsophisticated place. In the course the 1990s, the image of the city would, however, be transformed almost beyond recognition. Consequently, the view that outsiders have of Dublin today is invariably that of a

in The end of Irish history?
Class polarisation and neo-liberalism in the Irish Republic
Kieran Allen

3 Neither Boston nor Berlin: class polarisation and neo-liberalism in the Irish Republic KIERAN ALLEN The Celtic Tiger is dead. Between 1994 and 2000, real gross domestic product (GDP) in the Republic of Ireland grew at an annual average rate of nine per cent, taking per capita income from sixty-seven to eightysix per cent of the European Union (EU) average by 1999.1 In terms of conventional economics, this would seem to constitute a miracle. Growth rates for most industrial nations were sluggish in the 1990s and even the boom in the United States did not match

in The end of Irish history?
Patrick Doyle

's dream of Home Rule. Instead, a new generation demanded a more advanced form of political independence in the shape of an Irish Republic. While Sinn Fein's rise appeared to mark a break in Irish political culture, the party's attempt to establish a new hegemonic agenda for Ireland drew on older traditions that included agrarian populism, revolutionary Fenianism and the urbane intellectualism of the party's founder, Arthur Griffith. Within this grand project, co-operative thought helped to shape the new variant of mainstream nationalism and formed

in Civilising rural Ireland
Critical reflections on the Celtic Tiger

Sexual images and innuendo have become commonplace in contemporary advertising; they often fail to register in any meaningful way with the audience. This book examines the essentially racist stereotypes through which Irish people have conventionally been regarded have been increasingly challenged and even displaced perhaps by a sequence of rather more complimentary perspectives. The various developments that are signified within the figure of the Celtic Tiger might be considered to have radically altered the field of political possibility in Ireland. The enormous cuts in public expenditure that marked this period are held to have established a desirable, stable macroeconomic environment. The Celtic Tiger shows that one can use the rhetoric about 'social solidarity' while actually implementing policies which increase class polarisation. The book discusses the current hegemonic construction of Ireland as an open, cosmopolitan, multicultural, tourist-friendly society. The two central pieces of legislation which currently shape Irish immigration policy are the 1996 Refugee Act and the Immigration Bill of 1999. The book offers a critical examination of the realities of the Celtic Tiger for Irish women. Processes of nation state formation invariably invoke homogeneous narratives of ethnicity and national identity. To invoke a collective subject of contemporary Ireland rhetorically is to make such a strategic utopian political assumption. For the last few hundred years, the Gaeltacht has exemplified the crisis of Irish modernity. Culture becomes capital, and vice versa, while political action increasingly consists of the struggle to maintain democratic autonomy in the face of global market forces.

Given the significant similarities and differences between the welfare states of Northern Europe and their reactions to the perceived 'refugee crisis' of 2015, the book focuses primarily on the three main cases of Denmark, Sweden and Germany. Placed in a wider Northern European context – and illustrated by those chapters that also discuss refugee experiences in Norway and the UK – the Danish, Swedish and German cases are the largest case studies of this edited volume. Thus, the book contributes to debates on the governance of non-citizens and the meaning of displacement, mobility and seeking asylum by providing interdisciplinary analyses of a largely overlooked region of the world, with two specific aims. First, we scrutinize the construction of the 2015 crisis as a response to the large influx of refugees, paying particular attention to the disciplinary discourses and bureaucratic structures that are associated with it. Second, we investigate refugees’ encounters with these bureaucratic structures and consider how these encounters shape hopes for building a new life after displacement. This allows us to show that the mobility of specific segments of the world’s population continues to be seen as a threat and a risk that has to be governed and controlled. Focusing on the Northern European context, our volume interrogates emerging policies and discourses as well as the lived experiences of bureaucratization from the perspective of individuals who find themselves the very objects of bureaucracies.

Sinéad Kennedy

5 Irish women and the Celtic Tiger economy SINÉAD KENNEDY The term ‘Celtic Tiger’ has connotations that extend well beyond the realm of the purely economic. It has, for instance, become a metaphor for a new national consensus that constantly reminds us how ‘we have never had it so good’. This chapter takes issue with this consensus and argues instead that, while the recent boom in the Irish Republic has produced enormous wealth for a small minority, the majority of Irish people have benefited little from this apparent economic miracle. In fact, there has been a

in The end of Irish history?
Open Access (free)
Neil McNaughton

lives. Education is a prime example of this, but there is also a fear that artistic and cultural life will be suppressed by the dominance of strict Catholic values. Until 1998, indeed, the constitution of the Irish Republic contained principles of law which were effectively religious rules. Divorce, abortion and contraception, for example, were all outlawed in Irish law. On a stricter religious level, some Protestants also fear the authority of the Pope which Catholics accept. This is now a more extreme view, but is held by some such as the reverend Iain Paisley who

in Understanding British and European political issues
Open Access (free)
A reminder from the present
Pete Shirlow

political maturity of the BA is also saluted because it makes clear that the constitutional status of Northern Ireland can be altered only if the majority of people in Ireland, north and south, wish to effect such a change. This provides a sense that Northern Ireland is maintained by majoritarianism as opposed to ‘colonial’ administration. The ‘wisdom’ of political change, it is argued, is also underlined by the fact that the Irish Republic now recognises Northern Ireland as a legitimate political and constitutional entity.8 The BA has thus aimed to interweave symbolic

in The end of Irish history?
Open Access (free)
The Republic and Northern Ireland since 1990
Michael Parker

opposition to change. By general consensus, one of the most conspicuous signs of the seismic cultural shift that was beginning to take place in Irish society was the election of Mary Robinson to the Presidency of the Irish Republic in November 1990. A 46-year-old lawyer, she had an impressive record of successful advocacy behind her, and had been preoccupied with women’s rights since the early 1970s and gay rights in the 1980s. In the mid-1980s she had resigned from the Labour Party out of principled opposition to the Anglo-Irish Agreement, on the grounds that it had

in Irish literature since 1990