Silence in Modern Irish Literature. Edited by Michael McAteer, Pázmány Péter Catholic University, Budapest


Silence in Modern Irish Literature is the first book to focus exclusively on the treatment of silence in modern Irish literature. It reveals the wide spectrum of meanings that silence carries in modern Irish literature: a mark of historical loss, a form of resistance to authority, a force of social oppression, a testimony to the unspeakable, an expression of desire, a style of contemplation. This volume addresses silence in psychological, ethical, topographical, spiritual and aesthetic terms in works by a range of major authors including Yeats, Joyce, Beckett, Bowen and Friel.

Volume Editor: 

Michael McAteer


Literature and Cultural StudiesCriticism & Theory

Art HistoryDrama & Theatre Studies

Literature and Cultural StudiesEnglish & Scottish

ISBN13: 9789004342736

Publication Date: April 2017

Format: Hardback

Imprint: Brill | Rodopi

Biographical note

Michael McAteer, Ph.D. (1998), Queen’s University Belfast, is Associate Professor of English at Pázmány Péter University, Budapest. He has published extensively on Irish Literature, including Standish O’Grady, AE, Yeats (Irish Academic P, 2002); Yeats and European Drama (Cambridge UP, 2010).


All interested in modern Irish literature, European Modernist literature (Yeats, Joyce, Beckett, Flann O’Brien), Modern Drama, Postcolonial Studies, Gender Studies, and anyone concerned with psychoanalytical and philosophical approaches to literature.

Table of contents

Michael McAteer Introduction

Part One — Psychologies of Silence

Michael McAteer Silence as Disturbance in W. B. Yeats’s “How Ferencz Renyi Kept Silent”

Emilie Morin Theatres and Pathologies of Silence: Symbolism and Irish Drama from Maeterlinck to Beckett

Heather Ingman Silence, Language, and Power in Elizabeth Bowen’s Work

Aleksandra V. Jovanović Narrative, Silence, and Psychosis in John Banville’s The Book of Evidence

Part Two — Ethics of Silence

Willa Murphy Ritualized Silence and Secret Selves: The Seal of the Confessional in Nineteenth Century Ireland

Mark McGahon Silence, Justice, and the Différend in Joyce’s Ulysses

Benjamin Keatinge Silence as Testimony in Samuel Beckett and Derek Mahon

Alessandra Boller Women, Violence, and Silence: Roddy Doyle’s The Woman Who Walked Into Doors

Part Three — Places of Silence

Márta Pellérdi Silence and Displacement in Ivan Turgenev and George Moore

Anne Fogarty “The gentle thread of the little voice:” Silence, Sexuality, and Subjectivity in Kate O’Brien’s The Land of Spices

Stephanie Schwerter Between Silence and Re-narration: Translating Signs of Belfast’s Urban Space

Part Four — Spirits of Silence

Keith Hopper “Silent, so to speak:” Flann O’Brien and the Sense of an Ending

Thierry Robin Variations on Silence in Dermot Healy’s A Fool’s Errand

Virginie Roche-Tiengo The Voices of the Dead and the Silence of the Living in Brian Friel’s Drama

Notes on Contributors


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