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Dictionary of Irish Literature

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  • Coverage Dates: unknown
  • Update Frequency: unknown
  • Audience: General, students, research

Though Ireland is a small island with some five million inhabitants, it has produced one of the most remarkable bodies of literature in the world. Many Irish authors, such as Jonathan Swift, Oscar Wilde, George Bernard Shaw, William Butler Yeats, and James Joyce are among the most widely read and closely studied writers in the English language. The Irish literary renaissance during the earlier decades of the 20th century prompted authors to incorporate traditional Irish myths and legends in their works, and the last 15 years has witnessed a dramatic explosion of publishing activity in Ireland. This second edition of the Dictionary of Irish Literature is a revised, updated, and considerable expansion of the original volume. Through hundreds of entries, the work provides biographical facts, critical interpretation, and extensive bibliographical information for all significant Irish writers, past and present. Included are more than twice as many entries as in the first edition, along with current bibliographical material for all authors. Many of the new entries discuss writers who have emerged during the last 15 years, but a substantial number of entries cover earlier authors who were omitted from the first edition. Introductory material discusses the principal themes of Irish writing and the history of Irish literature, and a chronology provides a literary and historical time frame for the work.

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