Irish Writers in the Irish American Press, 1882-1964

Irish Writers in the Irish American Press, 1882-1964

by Stephen Butler


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Literary anthologies feature many of Ireland’s most well-known authors, Oscar Wilde, W. B. Yeats, J. M. Synge, George Bernard Shaw, Seán O’Casey, James Joyce, and Brendan Behan among them. While a number of notable scholars have contended that middle-class Irish Americans rejected or ignored this rebellious group of poets, playwrights, and novelists in favor of a conservative Catholic subculture brought over with the mass migration of the mid-nineteenth century, Stephen G. Butler demonstrates that the transatlantic relationship between these figures and a segment of Irish American journalists and citizens is more complicated—and sometimes more collaborative—than previously acknowledged.

Irish Writers in the Irish American Press spans the period from Oscar Wilde’s 1882 American lecture tour to the months following JFK’s assassination and covers the century in which Irish American identity was shaped by immigration, religion, politics, and economic advancement. Through a close engagement with Irish American periodicals, Butler offers a more nuanced understanding of the connections between Irish literary studies and Irish American culture during this period.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781625343673
Publisher: University of Massachusetts Press
Publication date: 10/31/2018
Pages: 232
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Stephen G. Butler, associate editor of New York Irish History, teaches in the Expository Writing Program at New York University.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi

Introduction: An Audience of Some Importance 1

Chapter 1 "Speranza's Son": Irish America Dismisses Oscar Wilde, 1882 14

Chapter 2 The Celt in Irish America: William Butler Yeats's Mission to the New Island, 1887-1904 34

Chapter 3 "No End of a Row": The National Theatre in the Shadow of Synge, 1903-1909 58

Chapter 4 "Weary of Misrepresentation": Reconsidering the Abbey Playwrights in Irish America, 1911-1913 68

Chapter 5 Meet The New Gossoon, Same as the Old Gossoon: The Abbey Playwrights in Irish America, 1931-1939 108

Chapter 6 Through a Bowl of Bitter Tears, Darkly: James Joyce and the Amerirish, 1917-1962 121

Chapter 7 Receptions of an Irish Rebel: Brendan Behan in Irish America, 1960-1964 147

Conclusions 173

Notes 185

Index 207

What People are Saying About This

Shaun O'Connell

Butler does a particularly thorough job of examining how Irish America responded to Irish writers and their works, with writing that is relaxed, clear, and detailed.

Sean Latham

Butler's book contains a wealth of valuable archival materials and a compelling exploration of how golden-age Irish literature and drama circulated in the United States. There are many surprising discoveries within its pages.

Customer Reviews