Othering Masculinity in the Multicultural Irish Thriller

  • Zélie Asava


This essay explores issues of race and gender in a number of Irish thrillers produced between 2004 and 2009. The films under discussion centralize the position of men in a New Ireland, at a time when categories of Irishness and masculinity became manifest in varying formulations. While these films explore Irish manhood as a contested category during the economic boom, questions of national and personal identity had come under serious scrutiny since the emergence in the late 1990s of not only a significant immigrant culture in Ireland, but also new understandings of what it meant to be Irish.1 During this period of what has come to be referred to as post-feminism, ideas of gender moved away from traditional concepts towards a more cosmopolitan, metrosexual, fluctuating state, as hegemonic structures shifted.2 This chapter examines constructions of Irish masculinity in three films which assert its diversity, non-fixity and instability: Ciarán O’Connor’s Trafficked (2009, first released as Capital Letters in 2004), Brendan Muldowney’s Savage (2009) and Neil Jordan’s Ondine (2009).


Medium Violence Irish Manhood Foreign Woman Irish Masculinity Celtic Tiger 
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© Zélie Asava 2014

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  • Zélie Asava

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