Boland: Can the Expat Find a “Home” in Language?

  • Michael O’Sullivan
Part of the New Directions in Irish and Irish American Literature book series (NDIIAL)


Eavan Boland’s work explores in detail the means through which the music, rhythms, and structures of poetic language can form a kind of contemplative and homely space of creation for the expat and particularly for the expat woman writer. Eavan Boland is the only writer examined in the book who is also a professor and academic at an Ivy League university. Therefore, her professional position as English professor also serves to speak for the range of professions and occupations that so many Irish expatriates have gained through their proficiency in English and, for some, through their command and mastery of English as a creative resource. This chapter also explores how Boland has found her way into poetry through her research into somewhat overlooked woman writers in the Irish tradition such as Jane Wilde (“Speranza”) and Eibhlín Dubh Ní Chonaill. The chapter also gives a reading of Boland’s own reading of Goldsmith’s “The Deserted Village”.


Eavan Boland English Women writers Identity Professions 

Works Cited

Works Cited

  1. The James Joyce Manuscripts at the National University of Ireland, Dublin, Ireland.Google Scholar
  2. Boland, Eavan. Outside History. New York, NY: W. W. Norton & Company, 2001.Google Scholar
  3. ———. A Journey with Two Maps: Becoming a Woman Poet. New York, NY: W. W. Norton & Company, 2012.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael O’Sullivan
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EnglishChinese University of Hong KongShatinHong Kong

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