© 2004

The Contemporary Irish Novel

Critical Readings

  • Authors
  • Offers indepth critical readings of key contemporary novels from Ireland and Northern Ireland
    Discusses novels by established writers, such as William Trevor, John Banville and Brian Moore, alongside texts by new generation authors, including Roddy Doyle, Dermot Bolger and Emma Donoghue
    Produces original interpretations by reading ostensibly different works in relation to each other

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvi
  2. Linden Peach
    Pages 1-21
  3. Linden Peach
    Pages 22-37
  4. Linden Peach
    Pages 38-67
  5. Linden Peach
    Pages 68-96
  6. Linden Peach
    Pages 97-125
  7. Linden Peach
    Pages 126-143
  8. Linden Peach
    Pages 144-168
  9. Linden Peach
    Pages 169-197
  10. Linden Peach
    Pages 198-218
  11. Linden Peach
    Pages 219-221
  12. Back Matter
    Pages 222-250

About this book


This essential guide offers innovative critical readings of key contemporary novels from Ireland and Northern Ireland. Linden Peach discusses texts that are representative of the richness of Irish writing during the 1980s and 1990s, and reads works by established authors alongside those by the new generation of writers. The novels examined include works by John Banville, Jennifer Johnston, Roddy Doyle, Emma Donoghue, Seamus Deane, William Trevor, Dermot Bolger, Joseph O'Connor, Patrick McCabe, Mary Morrissy, Glenn Patterson and Robert McLiam Wilson.

The Contemporary Irish Novel addresses themes such as ghosts and haunting, mimicry, obedience and subversion, the relocation and reinscription of identity, the mother figure, parent-child relations, madness, masculinity, self-harm, sexuality, domestic violence, fetishism and postmodernity. Drawing on a range of critical approaches including postcolonial, gender and psychoanalytic theory, Peach explores and celebrates the diversity of Irish fiction and suggests that the boundary between literature and theory is as permeable as that between Ireland and Northern Ireland.


exceptionalliterature English literature fiction literature novel

About the authors

LINDEN PEACH is Professor and Head of the School of Humanities at the University of Gloucestershire. He has published extensively on twentieth-century writing, and his recent books include studies on Toni Morrison, Angela Carter and Virginia Woolf (also published by Palgrave Macmillan).

Bibliographic information