Guinness Has Been Good - For You

When told that the Guinnesses had been good for Dubliners Brendan Behan responded that Dubliners had been good for the Guinnesses.. A good quip, but not entirely fair, as the historical record indicates.
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The Silent Intellectuals

John Carey thought that Oxford academics were a privileged bunch who had a nerve telling other people what to think. Irish professors are not so rarefied a breed. Perhaps more of them should occasionally peek out and contribute to public debate.
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Heading towards Nation

The names of the metro stops in Paris have a certain poetry, Richard Cobb thought, while its reassuring efficiency conveys a sense of security, a sense that one will certainly, at the end of the night, get home to bed.
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Bob Purdie: 1940-2014

A tribute to the life and work of Bob Purdie, left-wing writer, activist and analyst, a Scottish trade unionist who identified with militant Irish republicanism, then changed his mind, and ended up campaigning for Scottish independence.
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Owning Up

Made a mistake? A really bad one? The best thing to do is to own up. In full..
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Crustaceans on D'Olier Street

One of Dublin's main North-South thoroughfares once boasted a fine dining venue which attracted poets and writers, when they had a few bob.
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Expelled from the Word Hoard

Is it good news or bad news when 'selfie' is added to the dictionary? And what if 'sepia' is chucked out to make room for it?
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A Dublin Commemoration

Thomas Moore has fallen out of favour. Even his statue seems to have disappeared. His flame still burned brightly however on the occasion of his centenary in 1879, when a concert in his honour almost led to a riot.
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Frances Burney, Facebook Friends: 0

Having no intimates, and no one to whom she could confide her feelings, Frances Burney addressed them confidently to Nobody.
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Bascombe Is Back

Richard Ford's Frank Bascombe is back in a new novel, Let Me Be Frank with You. The only thing John Banville doesn't like is the title.
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Dublin At Your Feet

A number of pavement lights on the streets of south central Dublin bear the name Hayward Brothers. They were produced by the same family which also gave us a noted Irish actor, singer and travel writer.
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Tread Softly

Is Thomas Davis on the way to becoming a forgotten hero, yet another of those monumental figures from the past which say to us 'who is it now, who exactly was he?'
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In Proud And Glorious Memory

It has been suggested that many participants in the First World War sleepwalked into a conflict whose future dimensions they could not at the time imagine. But Italy walked into it wide awake ... having first devoted some thought to who was likely to win.
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GBS: An Old Man's Dreams

Whatever we have done, or whatever we have failed to do, may pursue us through restless nights for many decades after our conscious minds have forgotten it all.
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This Won't Hurt

In among the dross, occasional nuggets of gold can be found at the bottoms of the pages of many academic works, the historian of learning Anthony Grafton suggests.
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Byron in Venice

The great romantic poet found the Adriatic city to be a place where he could indulge both his spiritual and intellectual longings and his more carnal ones.
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Statue-breaking

When an empire ends and a country becomes independent the imperial soldiers leave - but the visible heritage they have left behind is sometimes found to be disturbing or unacceptable.
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Wandering Jews

The late historian Tony Judt rose from a poor London Jewish background to become a world-renowned scholar and political thinker. Would he have achieved the same had he been born in Ireland, where his father shipped up in the 1930s?
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It's the real thing

Colm Toibin's new novel, Nora Webster, has been garnering some very high praise from the critics.
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Speaka Da Eengleesh

Why is it that so much 'excellence' is to be found in the university sector in the English-speaking world, and so little elsewhere?
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