John McGahern

Authority and vision

Edited by Zeljka Doljanin and Máire Doyle

John McGahern


  • Hardcover
  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-3958-0
  • Pages: 240
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £21.00
  • Published Date: May 2019
  • BIC Category: Contemporary Literature, Literature, United Kingdom, Great Britain, Ireland, Literary studies: fiction, novelists & prose writers, Literary studies: c 1900 to c 2000, Literature: history & criticism, Biography: literary, LITERARY CRITICISM / Short Stories, BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Literary, LITERARY CRITICISM / European / English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh, Literature & literary studies / Literary studies: from c 1900 -, Biography & True Stories / Biography: literary, Literature & literary studies / Literary studies: fiction, novelists & prose writers


This unique collection brings together essays by experts from a variety of disciplines, including history, sociology, education, journalism, creative writing and literary criticism, to offer new insights into the writer, his work and his legacy. Featuring a range of distinguished contributors, including Roy Foster, Paula Meehan, Frank McGuinness and Melvyn Bragg, along with a previously unpublished McGahern interview, the collection enhances the existing body of criticism, extending the McGahern conversation into new areas and deepening appreciation of the considerable achievements of this great writer.

The volume, which also features an original poem by Paula Meehan written in honour of McGahern, will stimulate the interest of students, researchers and general readers of Irish literature and culture.


'John McGahern: Authority and Vision is a publication that will undoubtedly appeal to students of literature and anyone with an interest in discovering that qualities that made McGahern one of Ireland's foremost prose writers of the second half of the twentieth century. The collection is a credit to both the indefatigable work of the editors and the vision of Manchester University Press in seeing the value and interest of literary essays when they are written to the high standard one encounters in this volume.'
Eamon Maher, The Irish Times, February 2018

'John McGahern: Authority and Vision is indeed a fine collection of essays that showcases a wide range of interests in the writer while offering some fresh insights.'
Yen-Chi Wu, University College Cork, Irish Studies Review, Vol. 27, No. 2

'This is an exceptional volume of essays in many ways. That the editors, Zeljka Doljanin and Maire Doyle, managed to bring together the work of some of the finest contemporary writers is impressive. This edited volume of essays pays tribute to McGahern while deeply enriching our understanding of the man, the writer and the work.'
Professor Deirdre Raftery, UCD, Sunday Independent, August 2019


'The Woodpile' (original poem) - Paula Meehan
1 Introduction - Zeljka Doljanin and Máire Doyle
2 X: A Quarterly Review and McGahern's modernism - Tom Walker
3 John McGahern: landscape and the lost Republic - Nicholas Allen
4 Hand-rails to the past: McGahern and the memory of the Irish revolution - R. F. (Roy) Foster
5 'What was it all for?': John McGahern's critique of Irish Republicanism: an ethical reading - Ciaran Ross
6 The stranger in the fiction of John McGahern - Zeljka Doljanin
7 John McGahern's 'Oldfashioned' and Anglo-Irish culture - David Clare
8 Learning to love the world: the educational vision of John McGahern - Kevin Williams
9 Love and sex: McGahern's personal and detached reflections - Tom Inglis
10 Love and the world: marriage and McGahern's late vision - Máire Doyle
11 'Extraordinary breathing space': afterlife vision and redemption in the work of John McGahern - Catriona Clutterbuck
12 Writing violence: John McGahern and Flannery O'Connor - Frank McGuinness
13 The lived narrative versus the learned narrative - Linden MacIntyre
14 Inside McGahern's workshop - Paula Meehan
15 John McGahern - Melvyn Bragg
16 An interview with John McGahern - Stanley van der Ziel
Afterword - Declan Kiberd


Zeljka Doljanin is Director of the University College Dublin Writing Centre

Máire Doyle is a Lecturer in Creative Non-Fiction Writing at The Institute for the International Education of Students (IES Abroad), Dublin

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