Patrick Kavanagh & The Leader: The Poet, The Taoiseach and the Libel Trail

Overview

One of the most traumatic episodes in the poet Patrick Kavanagh's life was played out in public over two weeks in February 1954. By suing The Leader magazine for defamation, Kavanagh initiated a sensational courtroom showdown with John A. Costello, noted barrister and twice Taoiseach of Ireland.

The country was electrified as Costello's masterful, relentless cross-examination dissected Kavanagh's public and private life, and revealed the ...

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Patrick Kavanagh and The Leader: The Poet, the Politician and the Libel Trial

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Overview

One of the most traumatic episodes in the poet Patrick Kavanagh's life was played out in public over two weeks in February 1954. By suing The Leader magazine for defamation, Kavanagh initiated a sensational courtroom showdown with John A. Costello, noted barrister and twice Taoiseach of Ireland.

The country was electrified as Costello's masterful, relentless cross-examination dissected Kavanagh's public and private life, and revealed the tensions within Dublin's literary circle in the 1950s.

When Kavanagh took the case against The leader he could not have anticipated either the furore it would cause, or that the strain of the trial would shatter his considerable confidence and damage his health.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781856356640
  • Publisher: Mercier Press, Limited, The
  • Publication date: 6/20/2010
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements 7

Introduction 'Yous have no merit, no merit at all' 9

Chapter 1 'Poetry is a luxury trade' 13

Chapter 2 'All my own work and I got no training' 21

Chapter 3 'I expected every poet to have a spare wife' 27

Chapter 4 'The sacred keeper of his sacred conscience' 32

Chapter 5 'Alcohol is the worst enemy of the imagination' 43

Chapter 6 'The Casanova of the cinema cafes' 52

Chapter 7 'Like a monkey house at feeding time' 62

Chapter 8 'And I had loved not as I should, a creature made of clay' 68

Chapter 9 'The old foolishness' 75

Chapter 10 'A noisy anti-intellectual, ultra-nationalist rag' 87

Chapter 11 'Odium, hatred, ridicule and contempt' 94

Chapter 12 'Nothing is complimentary that takes away a man's dinner' 116

Chapter 13 'I don't believe in facetiousness' 147

Chapter 14 'The horror of his acquaintanceship' 182

Chapter 15 'The dull, grey verbal savagery of the law' 215

Chapter 16 'The great asset of the fine brain God had given him' 225

Chapter 17 'Those wigged folk from their lofty positions of importance' 240

Chapter 18 'W.B. Yeats introducing George Moore to the King of the Fairies' 250

Endnotes 271

Bibliography 283

Index 286

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