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Space to Think, a new book celebrating ten years of the Dublin Review of Books More Information 

Sleeping with the Enemy

The party system of European states, George Soros argues, continues to reflect the capital-labour divisions that mattered in the 19th and 20th centuries. But the cleavage that matters most today is the one between pro- and anti-European forces. Well up to a point, Mr Soros.
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Eastward Ho!

Peter Sirr prowls the tangled history and contemporary reality of Dublin’s Docklands.
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Sharp Right Ahead

European social democracy has lost ground in recent years, in spite of a notable success in Spain last month. Social democrats in Denmark, which goes to the polls next month, are offering ‘muscular’ policies on immigration and integration, making them sound very like the populist far right.
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Omani novelist wins Man Booker International

Jokha Alharthi's novel 'Celestial Bodies' provides readers with 'access to ideas and thoughts and experiences you aren’t normally given in English', according to the judges. The £50,000 prize money will be shared equally between Alharthi and her translator, Marilyn Booth.
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Men at Arms

The differing attitudes of Irishmen in the period from 1914 to 1922 and beyond can be seen through a brief history of three men. One of them, Emmet Dalton, served with distinction alongside Michael Collins. He had previously been in the British army, and he wasn’t ashamed of that.
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Earning Death

Jean Rhys disappeared off everyone’s radar for fifteen years after the critical success of her pre-war novels, eventually emerging from poverty and obscurity to produce ‑ in spite of ill health and alcoholism ‑ her masterpiece, published to great acclaim in her late seventies.
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Can Spring be far behind?

Percy Shelley felt, in winter’s grip, a presentiment of coming spring. It’s true there is a certain inevitability to these things and the leaves have never failed to return to the trees yet. But the wait can sometimes be a bit tedious.
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Jane Austen and IVF

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single woman in possession of the $800 needed to buy a vial of pre-screened sperm will wish to be informed of the heritable characteristics of its donor. A man of parts will certainly be favoured, yet even more so one of amiable and ductile temper.
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Karol Modzelewski 1937-2019

The distinguished Polish historian spent eight years in prison for his activism in favour of free trade unions and political democracy. He was also the man who came up with the name by which the movement he was engaged in building would become known, Solidarność.
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No Pizza. No Lasagne. No Directions.

There are a number of places in Europe where no one, except for some not very numerous sellers of tourist tat, wants any more visitors. In fact they’d prefer to be without the ones they have. So will we be staying away? No, no, let the others stay away. I need my culture.
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Vanishing Dublin II

Flora Mitchell’s warm tribute – in words, ink and watercolour – to old Dublin, published in the mid-1960s, records the city at a time when much of it was about to disappear forever, a victim of better economic times and the optimism, and heedlessness of the past, that accompanied them.
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The Left holds the line in Spain

Sunday’s general election saw a disastrous drop in the votes of the main right-wing party, the Popular Party, a qualified success for the centre-left PSOE and a smaller than forecast breakthrough for the new, ultra-nationalist party of the Spanish right, Vox.
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No More Mr Nice Guy

There is a widespread belief in the US that not only must China be contained but that the traditional American style of conducting international politics through alliances no longer serves the interests of the US. A radical change of approach is required. This is where Trump, the great disrupter, comes in.
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Response to a Review

Lucy E Salyer responds to comments by Breandan Mac Suibhne in his review of her book 'Under the Starry Flag'.
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Not reading but yawning

Well of course we all love books. There’s absolutely nothing like a book. Nothing so gripping. Nothing so enthralling. So why do I sometimes fall asleep in my armchair?
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Vanishing Dublin

A beautifully illustrated book published in a small edition in 1966 featuring descriptions of numerous streets and lanes in the capital has become a collector’s item. In Stephen Street the street sellers called out ‘Some good fish here!’, perhaps leaving open the possibility that there were some not so good too.
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‘The Sentiments of my Heart’

John Rocque’s Dublin map offered an image of harmony, order and industry. It lied of course. But George II was so taken by it he hung it in his apartments. Perhaps on sleepless nights, Peter Sirr speculates, he climbed out of bed to count his way down Sackville Street or follow his little finger down the lanes of the old city.
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Stockholm or Silicon Valley?

Childcare costs in Ireland absorb 28 per cent of disposable income; the European average is 12 per cent. We seem to be modelling our economy on the US, where there is no paid maternity leave. As increasing numbers of Irish people feel the squeeze, something is likely to give politically.
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The Politics of English Nostalgia

Ireland has a tradition of seeking help from the Continent, in the form of soldiers, swords, cannon - generically fíon Spainneach. It’s not surprising that we are comfortable in the Union. For the British, where sovereignty has been long attested by ‘divers sundry old authentic histories’, it’s a different matter.
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You can keep your Gucci loafers

A fifteenth century English treatise loudly complained of the tricky trade practices of foreigners and argued for a protectionist regime under which home industry would thrive. The future would be bright, since England dealt in solid goods everyone wanted while the foreigners sold only ‘fripperies, niffles and trifles’.
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