Seamus Deane

1940- [Seamus Francis Deane]; b. 9 Feb., Bogside, Derry [Londonderry], ed. St. Columb’s College, Derry, a day-boy and a classmate of Seamus Heaney - both beneficiaries of Butler Education Act (1944; extended to N.I. in 1947); proceeded to QUB (BA 1957-61), and Pembroke Coll., Cambridge (PhD 1963-68); published While Jewels Rot (1965), a poetry pamphlet; taught at Oregon, and Berkeley as Fulbright Fellow 1966-68; appt. lecturer in English and American Literature, UCD, 1969, and later Professor; m. Marion; visiting lecturer, Indiana University, Notre Dame, and Berkeley; contrib. scholarly articles La Revue de Littérature comparée; Modern Language Review, and Journal of the History of Ideas; reviews in Times Literary Supplement and New York Review of Books, and London Review of Books; Field Day director; co-ed. Atlantis (1969-73); guest. ed., The ‘ag, 1979;
issued Gradual Wars (1972), winner of “Æ” Memorial Prize; contested origins of violence with Conor Cruise O’Brien in columns of New York Review of Books (‘Who Began the Killing?’, 30 May 1974); issued Rumours (1977), a poetry collection; closely involved in literary and cultural discussion with Heaney, 1979-80 - of whom he once later wrote that ‘writing has itself become a form of guilt, and an expiation from it’; issued History Lessons (1983), poetry; inaugurated Field Day Pamphlet series, and issued Civilians and Barbarians (Derry 1983) as No. 3, being a critique of the stereotypes imposed by colonialism, including reflections on the conditions of Long Kesh prison (‘the most horrific imagery of degradation’); co-opt. to board of the Field Day Theatre Company [directorship]; issued Heroic Styles: The Tradition of an Idea (1984), originally a keynote lecture at the IASAIL conference of 198[4] calling for the dismantling of the ‘historical fiction [that] gave dignity and coherence to the Irish Protestant Ascendancy tradition’ and diagnosing ‘the pathology of literary unionism’ in W. B. Yeats, ending with a proposal for the post-colonial re-reading of Irish literature which served as the germ of the The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing (Vols. 1-3, 1991) - a compilation which met with charges of unduly excluding Irish women writers [‘I forgot’, was Deane’s instant explanation in conversation with Nuala O’Faolain];
issued Celtic Revivals: Essays in Modern Irish Literature (1985), A Short History of Irish Literature (1986); published his dissertation as as The French Enlightenment and Revolution in England 1989-1832 (1988), dealing with Edmund Burke, S. T. Coleridge, William Godwin, Shelley and others; issued Selected Poems (1988); contrib. on Stephen Dedalus to Cambridge Companion to James Joyce (1990); appt. Keough Prof. of Irish Studies at Notre Dame, 1993-; gave Clarendon Lecture, Oxford, May 1995; accompanied Seamus Heaney as a member of his party to the Nobel Prize award presentation in Stockholm, Jan. 1996; Reading in the Dark (1996), semi-autobiographical novel of a Derry childhood dealing with family secrecy and guilt arising from the mistaken killing of an a traitor during the 1950s IRA campaign; first excerpted as ‘Vanishings’ in Irish Review (1988), later serialised in Granta (?1991); shortlisted for Booker Prize, and compared by author to Goodbye to All That; read by Stephen Rea on BBC3;
contrib. an introduction to the Penguin edn. of Joyce’s Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1992); a keynote lecture on ‘Famine Politics’, Derry Famine Commemoration, 21 Feb. 1996; chaired symposium on “Secrets and Lies 25 Years On”, commemorating Bloody Sunday (30th Jan. 1972) and calling for a re-enquiry; Strange Country: Modernity and Nationhood in Irish Writing Since 1790 (1997), based on 1996 Clarendon Lectures at Oxford; appt. Director of Keough Institute, Notre Dame University and ND Summer School at Newman House, Stephen’s Green, Dublin, with outreach at Magee; participant in debate with Denis Donoghue and others, NY, Dec. 1997; scripted commemorative documentary on 1798, with Kevin Whelan, Luke Gibbons and others, 1998; working on The Wizard, a gothic novel; m. Marion Treacy, with four children (Conor, Ciaran, Cormac and Emer) and separated; lived in civil partnership with Emer Nolan, with whom one child (Iseult); gave IASIL keynote lecture, “Two Oxford Movements: 1850-1900”, DCU 2001; gave commissioned lecture on Thomas Moore at the RIA on the poet’s centenary, March 2002; served as gen. editor of the James Joyce series in Penguin Classics and Critical Conditons jointly published by Notre Dame and Cork UP; issues Foreign Affections: Essays on Edmund Burke (2005), largely dealing with Burke’s ideas on liberty and colonialism in the French and American connections; d. 12 May 2021, in Beaumont Hospital after a short illness; a selected edition of his essays was published by Cambridge University Press with a foreword by Joe Cleary in 2021. DIW ORM OCIL FDA

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Poetry collections
  • While Jewels Rot (Belfast: Festival Publs. 1965).
  • Gradual Wars (Shannon: IUP 1972), 3-62pp. [ltd. 100 copies casebound, no. and signed]; and Do. [rep. edn.] (Dublin: Irish Academic Press 1975).
  • Rumours (Dublin: Dolmen Press 1977 ), 54pp. [distrib. in US by Humanities Press Inc., N.J.].
  • History Lessons (Dublin: Gallery Books 1983), 39pp.
  • Selected Poems (Dublin: Gallery Press 1988), 78pp.
Fiction (novel)
  • Reading in the Dark (London: Jonathan Cape 1996), 239pp. [first undertaken by Granta/Penguin 1991; see infra].
Criticism (monographs)
  • Civilians and Barbarians [Field Day Pamph. No. 3] (Derry: Field Day 1983), 14pp.
  • Heroic Styles: The Tradition of an Idea [Field Day Pamph. No. 4] (Derry: Field Day 1984), 18pp.; rep. in Theorizing Ireland, ed. Claire Connolly (London & NY: Palgrave Macmillan 2003), pp.14-26.
  • Celtic Revivals: Essays in Modern Irish Literature, 1880-1980 (London: Faber & Faber 1985), 199pp. [see contents].
  • ed., Ireland’s Field Day, with an afterword by Denis Donoghue (London: Hutchinson 1985) [Field Day Pamph. Ser. [Tom Paulin, A new look at the language question; Seamus Heaney; An open letter; Deane, “Civilians and Barbarians”; Deane, “Heroic styles”; Richard Kearney, “Myth and motherland”; Declan Kiberd, “Anglo-Irish attitudes”; Denis Donoghue, Afterword; for full series see details].
  • A Short History of Irish Literature (London: Hutchinson 1986) & Do. [another edn.](Notre Dame UP 1986) - see Bibliography- as attached.]
  • The French Enlightenment and Revolution in England 1789-1832 (Harvard UP 1988).
  • ed., Nationalism, Colonialism and Literature (Field Day Company & Minnesota UP 1990) [incl. Edward Said, ‘Yeats and Decolonization’, pp.69-98].
  • Strange Country: Modernity and Nationhood in Irish Writing Since 1790 (Oxford: Clarendon Press 1997), 269pp. [ded. to Emer Nolan], and Do. [pb. edn.] (1998), 280pp. [see contents].
  • Foreign Affections: Essays on Edmund Burke (Cork UP/Notre Dame UP 2005) 300pp. [essays on Burke, Swift, Montesquieu, Lord Action, de Tocqueville & Cardinal J. H. Newman].
  • Small World: Ireland 1798-2018, with a foreward by Joe Cleary (Cambridge UP 2021), 344pp. [see contents]
Criticism (selected articles)
  • ‘Poetry in Northern Ireland’, in 20th Century Studies, No. 4 [Univ. of Kent] (November 1970)
  • ‘Why Bogside?’, in Honest Ulsterman, No. 27 (Jan.-March 1971).
  • ‘The Writer and the Troubles’, Threshold, No. 25 (Summer 1974), pp.13-17.
  • ‘Irish Poetry and Irish Nationalism, A Survey’, in Douglas Dunn, ed., Two Decades of Irish Writing (1975), pp.4-22.
  • ‘Mo Bhealach Féin’, in John Jordan, ed., The Pleasures of Gaelic Reading (Cork: Mercier 1977), pp.39-52.
  • ‘The Appetites of Gravity: Contemporary Irish Poetry,’ in Sewanee Review, 84, 1/2 (1976), pp.202-05.
  • ‘Literary Myths of the Revival: A Case for their Abandonment’, in Myth and Reality in Irish Literature, ed Joseph Ronsley (Waterloo: Wilfred Laurien UP 1977), pp.317-29.
  • ‘Unhappy and at Home’, [interview Seamus Heaney], in The Crane Bag, 1, 1 (1977), pp.66-72 [see copy - as attached].
  • ‘Yeats and O’Casey: Exemplary Dramatists’, in Threshold, No. 30 (Spring 1979), pp.21-28 [defending Yeats’s model], rep. as ‘O’Casey and Yeats: Exemplary Dramatists’, in Celtic Revivals: Essays in Modern Irish Literature, 1880-1980 (London: Faber & Faber 1985), pp.101-22.
  • ‘An Example of Tradition’, in ‘ag, 3, 1 (1979) [see extract].
  • ‘What is Field Day?’, in programme of Brian Friel, Three Sisters (Derry 1981) [unpaginated insert].
  • ‘The Longing for Modernity’ [Editorial], in Threshold, No. 32, guest ed. by Seamus Deane (Winter 1982), pp.1-7.
  • ‘Joyce and Nationalism’, in James Joyce: New Perspectives, ed. Colin MacCabe (Brighton: Harvester Wheatsheaf 1982), pp.168-83.
  • ‘Russian History Lesson’, in The ‘ag, 7, 1 (1983), p.176 [text & poem].
  • ‘Yeats and the Occult’, review of sundry works on Yeats, in London Review of Books (18 Oct. 1984), p.27 [see works reviewed, infra].
  • ‘The Artist and the Troubles’, in in Ireland and the Arts, ed. T. P. Coogan [Special Issue of Literary Review] (London: Namara Press 1984), pp.42-50 [see extract].
  • Irish Writers 1886-1986 [Irish Heritage Ser., No. 57] (Dublin: Eason & Son Ltd. 1986), 24pp.
  • ‘Remembering the Future’, in The ‘ag [RTÉ/UCD Lectures], 8, 1 (1984), 81-92.
  • ‘Fictions and Politics: Irish Nineteenth-Century National Character 1790-1900’, in Gaéliana, VI (1984), rep. in The Writer as Witness: Literature as Historical Evidence, ed. Tom Dunne, ed. (Cork UP 1987), c.p.103.
  • ‘“Masked with Matthew Arnold’s Face”: Joyce and Liberalism’, in James Joyce: The Centennial Symposium, ed. Morris Beja, et al. (Illinois UP 1986), pp.9-20.
  • ‘Reconciliation of Cultures: Apocalypse Now!’, in Reconciling Memories, ed. Alan D. Falconer (Dublin: Columba Press 1988) [on disconnecting Church and State].
  • ‘Joyce the Irishman’, in Derek Attridge, ed., The Cambridge Companion to James Joyce (Cambridge UP 1990) [q.pp.].
  • ‘Wherever Green is Read’, in Revising the Rising, ed. Máirín Ní Dhonnchadha & Theo Dorgan (Derry: Field Day 1991), pp.91-105.
  • ‘Canon Fodder: Literary Mythologies in Ireland’, in Styles of Belonging: Cultural Identities in Ulster, ed., Jean Lundy & Aodán MacPóilin (Belfast 1992), cp.31.
  • ‘Joyce and Beckett’, in The Irish University Review, 14, 1 (1994), pp.57-68.
  • [...]
  • ‘The Famous Seamus: the author recalls growing up with Ireland’s Nobel laureate in Literature’, in New Yorker (March 2000) [“Life and Letters”], pp.[58]-79 [available online; see extract under Heaney, Commentary, infra].
  • ‘Dead Ends: Joyce’s finest moments’, in Semicolonial Joyce, ed. Derek Attridge & Marjorie Howe (Cambridge: Cambridge UP 2000, pp.21-36.
  • ‘Freedom Betrayed: Acton, Burke and Ireland’, in The Irish Review, 30, 1 [Nov.] (Spring-Summer 2003), pp.13-35 [extract].
  • ‘Dumbness and Eloquence: A Note on English as We Write It in Ireland’, in Ireland and Postcolonial Theory, ed. Clare Carroll & Patricia King (Notre Dame UP 2003), pp.109-28.
  • [...]
  • Finnegans Wake (James Joyce, 1939)’, in The Novel, Vol. II: Forms and Themes, ed. Franco Moretti (Princeton UP 2006), pp. 906-11.
Bibliographical details

‘Yeats and the Occult’, in London Review of Books (18 Oct. 1984), p.27 - works reviewed: The Mystery Religion of W.B. Yeats by Graham Hough (Harvester 1984); Craig Cairns, Yeats, Eliot, Pound and the Politics of Poetry (Croom Helm 1982); Elizabeth Cullingford, ed., Yeats - Poems 1919-1935: A Selection of Critical Essays (Macmillan 1984); Ian Jack, The Poet and his Audience (Cambridge 1984); A. Norman Jeffares, A New Commentary on the Poems of W.B. Yeats (Macmillan 1984); A. Norman Jeffares, ed., Poems of W.B. Yeats (Macmillan 1984).

Multi-numerous book-reviews incl. Terry Eagleton, Heathcliff and the Great Hunger, in London Review of Books (19 Oct. 1995); review of David Simpson’s Romanticism, Nationalism, and the Revolt against Theory (Chicago UP ?1993), 243pp., in Times Literary Supplement (11 Feb. 1994) [with complete approbation]; ‘Merciless Ireland’ [review of Frank McCourt, Angela’s Ashes], in Guardian Weekly ([?]18 Jan. 1997); Marianne McDonald & J. Michael Walton, ‘Field Day’s Greeks (and Russians)’, in Amid our Troubles: Irish Versions of Greek Tragedy (London: Methuen 2002), pp.148-64.

Query: ‘Territorial and Extraterritorial: Moments from Irish Writing: A Note’, in Nineteenth-century Contexts, 18 (q.d.)
  • [with A. N. L. Munby,] ed., Sale Catalogues of Libraries of Eminent Persons, Vol. 8 - Politicians: Thomas Hollis, John Wilkes, Edmund Burke, Warren Hastings, William Godwin, Daniel O’Connell (1973).
  • gen. ed., The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing, 3 vols. (Derry: Field Day Co. 1991) [see extracts].
  • ed. & intro., A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man [Penguin twentieth-century classics] ((Harmondsworth: Penguin Books 1992, 2000), xlii, 329pp.
  • Preface to [Ardoyne Commemoration Project,] Ardoyne: The Untold Truth (Belfast: Beyond the Pale 2003), 560pp.
  • ed., ‘Critical Conditions’, Vols. 1 & 2 [being Luke Gibbons, Transformations in Irish Culture (Field Day/Cork UP 1995), and Kevin Whelan, The Tree of Liberty Radicalism, Catholicism, and the Construction of Irish Identity (Field Day/Cork UP 1995), ... &c.]
Contributions to Honest Ulsterman
  • ‘An Irish Intelligentsia: Reflections on Its Desirability’, in The Honest Ulsterman, 46 (q.d.), p.27ff.
  • ‘The Long Ascendancy’, review of Richard Murphy, Selected Poems, in The Honest Ulsterman, 66 (q.d.), p.66.
  • ‘Black Mountain Jacobin’, review of Tom Paulin, The Liberty Tree, The Honest Ulsterman, 74 (q.d.), p.49.
  • also poems in Honest Ulsterman, Nos. 51, 55, 66, 74, 81 [see Tom Clyde, ed., Honest Ulsterman, Author Index, 1995].

The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing, gen. ed. Seamus Deane (Derry 1996; Cork 2002)
Table of Contents General Bibliography.
Both of the above held as copies in the RICORSO Library > Bibliographies [index]
Details: The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing (Derry: Field Day 1991) - Vols 1-3, Gen. Ed. Seamus Deane; Assoc. Eds., Andrew Carpenter & Jonathan Williams. Add. Vols. 4 & 5: The Field Day Anthology of Irish Women's Writing and Traditions (Cork UP 2002). Contents list from COPAC - online. Notes that Vols. 4-5 have imprint NY: NYU Press; [Cork] Ireland: Cork UP. Text in English and Irish.
[ Full details of Field Day Anthology (5 vols.) contents are available at COPAC - online; latest access - 08.08.2023. ]

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Field Day Productions & Pamphlet Series
Theatrical Productions

Translations (1980) by Brian Friel
Three Sisters (1981) an adaptation of Chekhov’s play by Brian Friel
The Communication Cord (1982) by Brian Friel.
Boesman and Lena (1983) by Athol Fugard
The Riot Act (1984) Tom Paulin’s version of Antigone
High Time (1984) Derek Mahon’s transition of Molière’s Ecole des Mas
Double Cross (publ. 1986) by Thomas Kilroy
Pentecost (publ. 1989) by Stewart Parker
Sainte Oscar (publ. 1989) by Terry Eagleton

Pamphlet Series

No. 1 - “A new look at the language question” (1983) by Tom Paulin
No. 2 -“An open letter” (1983) by Seamus Heaney
No. 3 - “Civilians and barbarians” (1983) by Seamus Deane

No. 4 - “Heroic styles: the tradition of an idea” (1984) by Seamus Deane
No. 5 - “Myth and motherland” (1984) by Richard Kearney
No. 6 - “Anglo-Irish attitudes” (1984) by Declan Kiberd

No. 7 - “The whole Protestant community” (1985) by Terence Brown
No. 8 - “Watchmen in Sion” (1985) by Marianne Elliot
No. 9 - “Liberty and authority in Ireland” by Robert McCartney

No. 10 - “Dynamics of coercion” (1986) by Eanna Mulloy
No. 11 - “Emergency Legislation: The apparatus of repression” (1986) by Michael Farrell
No. 12 - “Law and constitution: present discontents”(1986) by Patrick J. McGrory

No. 13 - “Nationalism: irony and commitment” (1988) by Terry Eagleton
No. 14 - “Modernism and imperialism” (1988) by Fredric Jameson*
No. 15 - “Yeats and decolonization” (1988) by Edward Said

Source: Emory English Dept [online].
*Rep. in Nationalism, Colonialism and Literature, ed. Deane, Minneapolis 1990, 43-66pp.

For Irish studies bibliographies given in The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing (1991), see under Bibliographies, infra.

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Bibliographical details
Celtic Revivals: Essays in Modern Irish Literature, 1880-1980 (London: Faber & Faber 1985), 199pp. Introduction’ [11]; ‘Arnold, Burke and the Celts’ [17]; ‘The Literary Myths of the Revival’ [28]; ‘Yeats and the Idea of Revolution’ [38]; ‘Synge and Heroism’ [51]; ‘Pearse; Writing and Chivalry’ [63]; ‘Joyce and Stephen: The Provincial Intellectual’ [75]; ‘Joyce and Nationalism’ [92]; ‘O’Casey and Yeats: Exemplary Dramatists’ [108]; ‘Joyce and Beckett’ [123]; ‘Thomas Kinsella: “Nursed out of the Wreckage”’ [135]; ‘John Montague: The Kingdom of the Dead’ [146]; ‘Derek Mahon: Freedom from History’ [156]; ‘Brian Friel: The Double Stage’ [166]; ‘Seamus Heaney: The Timorous and the Bold’ [174]; ‘Select Bibliography, 187-92; Index, 193. [Note also Wake Forest UP edn. 1987, pp.199, Bibl., 187-92pp.]

Heroic Styles: The Tradition of an Idea’, rep. in Ireland’s Field Day (Derry: Field Day Theatre Co.; London: Hutchinson 1985), pp.45-59; also in Claire Connelly, ed., Theorising Ireland (London: Palgrave/Macmillan 2003), pp.12-26.

Reading in the Dark (London: Jonathan Cape 1996), 232pp.; Chapter One: Stairs (Feb. 1945); Disappearances (Sept. 1945); Eddie (Nov. 1947); Accident (June 1948); Feet (Sept. 1948); Reading in the Dark (Oct. 1948); Grandfather (Dec. 1948); Pistol (Jan 1949) [29]. Chapter Two: Fire (June 1949); American Cities (Sept. 1949); Blood (Oct. 1949); The Feud (Feb. 1950); The Fort (Jue 1950); Field of the Disappeared (Aug. 1950); Grianan (Sept. 1950); Katie’s Story (Oct. 1950) [71]. Part II, Chapter Three: Rats (Nov. 1950); Crazy Joe (Aug. 1951); Maths (Nov. 1951); Sergeant Burke (May 1951); Informer (June 1951); Roses (July 1951); Bishop (Aug. 1951); Grandfather (Oct. 1952); Deathbed (Nov. 1952); Lundy Burns (Dec. 1952); Father (Feb. 1953) [136]. Chapter Four: Mother (May 1953); The Facts of Life (Sept. 1953); Going to the Pictures (Nov. 1953); Haunted (Dec. 1953); Retreat (March 1954); Brothel (April 1954); Katie (May 1954) [174]. Part III, Chapter Five: Religious Knowledge (Sept. 1954); All of It? (Nov. 1954); Crazy Joe (Jan. 1955); In Irish (Oct. 1955); Political Education (Nov. 1956); Sergeant Burke (Dec. 1957) [206]. Chapter Six: People in Small Places (June 1958); Crazy Joe and Mother (Oct. 1958); Mother (Nov. 1958); Dance (Dec. 1958); Birthday Gift (may 1959); My Father (June 1961); After (July 1971) [233; End]. See also prior extract printed as ‘Vanishings: extract from a forthcoming novel’, in Irish Review, No. 3 (Cork 1988).

Strange Country: Modernity and Nationhood in Ireland Since 1790 (Oxford: Clarendon Press 1997), 269pp. CONTENTS: 1. Phantasmal France, Unreal Ireland: Sobering Reflections [1]; 2. National Character and the Character of Nations [49]; 2. Control of Types, Types of Control: The Gothic, the Occult, the Crowd [100]. 4. Boredom and Apocalypse: A National Paradigm [145]. Notes [198]; Bibliography [25]; Index [259].

Note: each chapter contains several subdivisions, e.g., Chap. 1: Foundational texts (p.1); Reading the Reflections (p.3); Aesthetic Energy, National Character (p.18), ... &c. Chap. 3: The Nation and the Famine (p.49); Speaking the Nation: The Collegians (p.56); Accents and sobriety (p.63); The Politics of Music: Thomas Moore (p.66), ... &c. See extracts in Commentary under Gerald Griffin [q.v.], Flann O’Brien [q.v.], and Bram Stoker [q.v.], et al. [See longer extracts under Quotations - infra.]

Small World: Ireland 1798-2018, with a foreward by Joe Cleary (Cambridge UP 2021), 344pp. CONTENTS: Dedication, [v-v]; Foreword, [ix-xxvii]; Acknowledgements, [xxx]; 1. Swift as Classic, [1-18]; 2. Burke in the USA [19-33]; 3. Tone: The Great Nation and the Evil Empire, [34-73]; 4. Imperialism and Nationalism, [74-93]; 5. Irish National Character 1790-1900, [94-121; 6. Civilians and Barbarians, [122-32; 7. Heroic Styles: The Tradition of an Idea [133-48]; 8. Ulysses: The Exhaustion of Literature and the Literature of Exhaustion [149-61]; 9. Dead Ends: Joyce’s Finest Moments [162-79]; 10. Elizabeth Bowen: Sentenced to Death [180-206 [The House in Paris]]; 11. Elizabeth Bowen - Two Stories in One [207-14]; 12. Mary Lavin: Celibates, [215-34]; 13. Emergency Aesthetics [235-54]; 14. Wherever Green is Read [255-69]; 15. The Famous Seamus [270-86]; 16. The End of the World [287-330]. Index, [331-44].

Query, Fiction as History: History as Fiction (Rome: Bulzoni 1984) [quoted in Neil Cornwell, The Literary Fantastic from Gothic to Postmodernism (Harvester Wheatsheaf 1990), p.138].

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Seamus Deane with Brian Friel
  • Dymphna Callaghan, ‘An Interview with Seamus Deane’, in Social Text, 38 (1994).Nick Fraser [interview-article], ‘A Kind of Life Sentence’, in The Guardian (28 Oct. 1996), p.9.
  • [q.a.,] ‘Reading in the Dark: An Interview with Seamus Deane’, in English Media Magazine, 36 (Summer 1997), pp.18-19.
  • Carol Rumens, ‘Reading Deane’ [interview], in Fortnight [Belfast] (July-Aug. 1997), p.30 [extract].
  • Nicholas Patterson, ‘Different Strokes: An Interview with Seamus Deane’, in Boston Phoenix (6 Aug. 1998) [extract].
  • John Brown, ed., In the Chair: Interviews with Poets from the North of Ireland (Galway: Salmon 2002) [views on contemporaries].
  • Marilynn Richtarik, ‘The Field Day Theatre Company’, in The Cambridge Companion to Twentieth-century Irish Drama, ed. Shaun Richards (Cambridge UP 2003) [Chap. 14.
  • [...]
  • Aidan O’Malley, Field Day and the Translation of Irish Identities: Performing Contradictions (Basingstoke & NY: Palgrave Macmillan 2011), viii, 249pp.
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See numerous critics & reviewers under Commentary [infra].
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  • Marilynn J. Richtarik, Acting Between the Lines: The Field Day Theatre Company and Irish Cultural Politics 1980-1984 Oxford: Clarendon Press 1994), passim.
  • John Hildebidle, ‘Whose Field Day? Investigation of the origins, purposes, enterprises, and manner of operation of Field Day Group’ (MIT Diss.; CAIS Bibl. 1995).
  • Conor McCarthy, ‘Intellectual property: Edna Longley and Seamus Deane’, in Modernisation: Crisis and Culture in Ireland 1969-1992 (Dublin: Four Courts Press 2000), [Chap. 5], pp.197-228.
  • Vivian Valvano Lynch, ‘Reading in the Dark: Seame Deane finds a “Door into the Light”’ [IASIL paper, 1998].
  • Tom Herron, ‘The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing as communicative space/act’, in Irish Encounters: Poetry, Politics and Prose, ed. Alan Marshall & Neil Sammells (Bath: Sulis Press 1998) [Chap. 17; qpp.].
  • Mary Gray Davidson, ‘Ireland’s Ghost’, interview on “Common Ground” [radio programme; supported by Stanley Foundation, Iowa] (9 June 1998) [online & extract].
  • Sarah Broome & Vivian Valvano Lynch, Myth, history and fiction in works by Seamus Heaney and Seamus Deane [Working Papers in Irish Studies] (Ft. Lauderdale: Liberal Arts Dept., Nova Southeastern University 2000), 27pp.
  • Margaret Kelleher, ‘The Cabinet of Irish Literature: A Historical Perspective on Irish Anthologies’, in Eire-Ireland: Journal of Irish Studies (Fall-Winter 2003) [online].
  • Linden Peach, The Contemporary Irish Novel: Critical Readings (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan 2004), espec. Chap. 3: ‘Secret Hauntings’ [on Reading in the Dark, and works by other writers].
  • Aveen McManus, “Narratives of Childhood - A Comparative Study” (MA Diss., Univ. of Ulster 2005) [with Frances Molloy, Jennifer Johnston, David Park, Glenn Patterson, Seamus Deane, Edna O’Brien, Patrick MacCabe].
  • Stephen Regan, ‘Seamus Deane’s Reading in the Dark, John Walsh’s The Falling Angels and John McGahern’s Memoir’, in Irish Literature Since 1990: Diverse Voices, ed. Scott Brewster & Michael Parker (Manchester UP 2009) [Chap. 11].
  • John Wilson Foster, in Between Shadows: Modern Irish Writing and Culture (Dublin: IAP 2009), ‘Getting the North: Yeats and Northern Nationalism’ [Chap. 13], espec. pp.184-190: ‘Seamus Deane’ [‘Ulster and unionism are offered to the reader onloy as a pathology’, p.190.].
  • Liam Harte, ‘Shadows in the Air: Seamus Deane’s Reading in the Dark (1996)’, in Reading the Contemporary Irish Novel (Oxford: Blackwell 2013), pp.173-76.
  • Catriona Crowe, ‘Testimony to a flowering’, in The Dublin Review, No. 10 (2013) [review-essay on Vols. 4 & 5 of Field Day Anthology] - available online [accessed 03.01.2016].
  • Gerald Dawe, ‘Seamus Deane the poet: coming to terms with the past [...] the uncollected and undercelebrated poetry of a Derry writer best known for his memoir Reading in the Dark‘, in The Irish Times (6 April 2017) [available online].

See also Elmer Kennedy-Andrews, Fiction and the Northern Irish Troubles Since 1969: (De-)constructing the North (Dublin: Four Courts Press 2002) [p.210ff.]; Deepika Bahri, ‘Field Day Theatre Company’, article in Bahri’s Postcolonial Studies website pages at Emory University on Field Day [online; accessed 02.06.2008];

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  • Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin, review of Heroic Styles: Tim Tradition of an Idea, in Cyphers, 21 (1984), pp.50-52.
  • Kevin Barry, review of The Field Day Anthology, in The European English Messenger, 1, 3 (Autumn 1992), pp.46-49.
  • Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin, review of The Field Day Anthology, in Cyphers, 35 (1992), pp.52.
  • Blake Morrison, review of Reading in the Dark, in Independent on Sunday (1 Sept. 1996).
  • Edna Longley, ‘Autobiography as History’, review of Reading in the Dark, in Fortnight (Nov. 1996), p.31.
  • Terry Eagleton, ‘The Bogside Bard’, review of Reading in the Dark, in New Statesman (20 Aug. 1996), p.46.
  • Eamonn Hughes, ‘Belfastards and Derriers’, review of Reading in the Dark [with other works by Robert McLiam Wilson, Deirdre Madden, and Michael Foley], in The Irish Review, 20 [Ideas of Nationhood] (Winter/Spring 1997), pp.151-57.
  • Declan Kiberd, ‘In Search of Irishness’, review of Strange Country, in Éire-Ireland, 32, 2 & 3 (Summer/Autumn 1997), pp.183-91 [with others].
  • Stephen Regan, review of Reading in the Dark, in Irish Studies Review, 19 (Summer 1997), pp.35-40.
  • Danine Farquharson, ‘Resisting Genre and Type: Narrative Strategy and Instabiity in Danny Morrison’s The Wrong Man and Seamus Deane’s Reading in the Dark’, in Writing Ulster [“Northern Narratives” Issue, ed. Bill Lazenblatt], 6 (1999), pp.90-112, 101ff.
  • Liam Harte, ‘History Lessons: Post-colonialism and Seamus Deane’s Reading in the Dark’, in Irish University Review, 30, 1 (Spring/Summer 2000) [c.p.152].
  • Thomas Bartlett, review of Foreign Affections, in The Irish Times (17 Dec. 2005), Weekend, p.11 [see under Burke, supra].
  • Aveen McManus, “Narratives of Childhood - A Comparative Study” (MA Diss., Univ. of Ulster 2005) [with Mary Costello, Frances Molloy, Jennifer Johnston, David Park, Glenn Patterson, Edna O’Brien, Patrick MacCabe].

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See separate file [infra].

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See separate file [infra].

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John Montague, ed., Faber Book of Irish Verse (1974), selects “Return”.

Peter Fallon & Seán Golden, eds., Soft Day: A Miscellany Of Contemporary Irish Writing (Dublin: Wolfhound Press; US: Notre Dame UP 1980), selects ‘Migration’; ‘Fording River’; ‘The Brethren’.

Andrew Carpenter & Peter Fallon, eds., The Writers: A Sense of Place (Dublin: O’Brien Press 1980), contains excerpt from a long poem, with photo-port., pp.28-30.

Seamus Deane, gen. ed., The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing (Derry: Field Day 1991), Vol. 3 [edited by himself], selects criticism and poems, intro. to Brian Friel, Philadelphia, Here I Come; and ‘Christmas at Beaconsfield’; BIOG p.1434.

Books in Print (1994): Gradual Wars (IUP 1972) [AE Memorial Prize] 0 71652 152 0]; Rumours (Dublin: Dolmen 1977) [0 85105 320 3]; History Lessons (Dublin: Gallery Press 1983) [0 90401 137 2]; Selected Poems (Oldcastle: Gallery 1988), 78pp. [1 85235 029 6; pb. 028 8]; also Deane, ed. and intro., Thomas Holcroft, The Adventures of Hugh Trevor (London: OUP 1973), xviii+511pp.; intro. Brian Friel, Selected Stories (Dublin: Gallery Press 1979), 121pp. Celtic Revivals, Essays in Modern Irish Literature (London: Faber 1984) [0 571 13506 5]; A Short History of Irish Literature (London: Hutchinson Educ. 1986), 240pp, [009161 360 4]; also French Revolution and Enlightenment in England 1789-1832 (Harvard UP 1988; rep. 1993), [0 674 32240 1]; Reading in the Dark (Granta Bks 1991), [0 1401 4206 1]; also Deane, ed., and intro. Sale Catalogues of Libraries of Eminent Persons, vol. 8, Politicians, of gen. ed., A. N. L. Munby (London: Mansell Information 1973) [0 7210 0367 3]

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Reading in the Dark (1996), semi-autobiographical novel of a Derry childhood, narrated by the boy grown older and focussed on the haunting of his family by the secrecy and guilt arising from the mistaken killing of Uncle Eddie, a falsely-suspected traitor during the 1950s IRA campaign, while McElhinny, the real culprit and lover of the boy’s mother has since fled to America deserting his wife Kate and their child Maeve. The retreat of the mother into silence following a stroke is the measure of her inability to cope with the secret of her love for McIlhenny and the truth of her grandfather’s ordering the execution of her husband’s brother, which is carried out at An Grianan, an ancient Irish fortress above the city of Derry. The mother’s stroke coincides with the beginning of the Troubles in 1968. A politically-moderate policeman Burke, who permits the boy’s eye-witness knowledge of a fatal accident in which a lorry kills another Catholic boy to be substituted in popular lore by the idea that a police car crew carelessly perpetrated the killing occurs the dramatis persona and events of the novel, while Brother Regan urges the boys to trust in God’s justice in the next world rather than becoming involved in paramilitary activity.

Richtarik’s Field Day: One of the problems of Deane’s ‘Civilians and Barbarians’, then, becomes partisanship: ‘he sided with the oppressed barbarians in a way that, in the context, makes him sound like a terrorist sympathiser’; goes on to rebuke Deane ‘for leaving Deane out of the equation’; all cited in Lionel Pilkington, review of Marilynn Richtarik, Acting Between the Lines: The Field Day Theatre and Irish Cultural Politics, 1980-1984 (1994), in Linen Hall Review, 12, 2 (Winter 1995/96), p.11.

Declan Kiberd: Kiberd concurs with Deane’s view that in O’Casey’s plays ‘all the gunmen are shadows, and consequently his aggression towards politics is a form of shadow-boxing’ ([‘O’Casey and Yeats: Exemplary Dramatists’, in Celtic Revivals, London / Boston: Faber p.109]; quoted in Kiberd, Inventing Ireland, 1995, p.228); note also Kiberd’s remark: ‘Seamus Deane has added a subtler inflection to that analysis [viz., D. P. Moran’s] describing Synge as one who creamed off the Gaelic culture in the few remaining areas where his class had failed to exterminate it, but where he could now appropriate its energies on the eve of their extinction. (Kiberd, op. cit., p.174, citing Deane, ‘Synge and Heroism’, in Celtic Revivals, London 1985, pp.51-62.)

Errata: Introducing the poetry of Thomas Furlong in The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing (1991, Vol. 1), Deane quotes the brief account of Furlong’s withdrawal from the world in the prologue to The Misanthrope where it is said to be recorded that he lived in London from about 1819, ‘excluded from all society, reviling and abusing his species and shunning their company and conversation’ - and, further: ‘he never stirred out but when he went to the office of a Newspaper, of which he was assistant editor, he admitted neither man nor woman servant into his apartments; he would listen to no physician in his illness; nor would he allow any minister of religion to come near him - and to sum up his character, he died as he had lived! Yet this man was once cheerful and open-hearted, but early disappointments had soured his temper and altered his disposition.’ Deane remarks ‘Furlong is an exemplary case of a writer entrapped within a dark and inexpressible subjectivity.’ Note however, that the misanthrope so described is not Furlong himself but the character to whom Furlong says the book is dedicated as its proper subject. [See further under Furlong, q.v.]

An Example of Tradition’, in The ‘ag, 3, 1 (1979), argues that the continuance of the various traditions, Ascendancy, revolutionary idealism, and Joycean practice of repudiation, involves betrayal of others due to co-presence of native and colonial strains in Irish culture. (See Robert Garrett, Modern Irish Poetry, Tradition and Continuity from Yeats to Heaney, 1986 [q.p.].)

Age of Rebukes: Note the recurrent use of the terms ‘rebuke’ and ‘legitimise’ in comments on Synge, etc., in Celtic Revivals (London 1985), e.g.: ‘[each] story of fantasy […] is, first, rebuked by fact and then, in the next instant, legitimised as belonging or contributing to a higher truth than mere fact could ever reach’ (p.57; quoted in Donald E. Morse, et al., A Small Nation’s Contribution to the World, Gerrards Cross: Colin Smythe, 1993, p.36).

Greeting Eagleton: Terry Eagleton’s Heathcliff and the Great Hunger (Verso 1995) was greeted by Deane as as one of the most important contributions to the Irish cultural debates in many years (London Review of Books, q.d.).

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Reconciliation of Cultures: Apocalypse Now!’, in Alan D. Falconer, ed., Reconciling Memories (Dublin: Columba Press 1988) is quoted by Tom Kilroy in ‘Secularised Ireland’ (see Edna Longley, ed., Culture in Ireland, Diversity or Division, QUB / IIS 1991), pp.138-39.

Merciless Ireland’, in Guardian Weekly ([?]18 Jan. 1997), a review of Frank McCourt, Angela’s Ashes (1997), is arguably illustrative of his own attitude towards autobiographical fiction versus fictonal autobiography: ‘;McCourt is certainly a fine writer, but I wonder about his sense of economy. He believes too much in the reliability of memory as if that were enough in itself.’ [see infra.]

Female addendum: The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing, Women’s Annexe (4th volume; due 2002), deals with writings by and about women; the section eds. are Máirín Ní Dhonnchadha, Margaret MacCurtain, Siobhan Kilfeather, Angela Bourke, Maria Luddy, Mary O’Dowd, Ceraldine Meany, Clair Wills, and Nuala Ní Dhomnaill.

Indifferent stuff: For Deane’s specialised sense of “indifference”, see under ‘The Poet’s Dream of an Audience’ [supra] and ‘Wherever Green is Read’ [supra], but also his remarks on James Joyce, quoted with commentary in Conor McCarthy, Modernisation, Crisis and Culture in Ireland 1969-1992 (Dublin:Four Courts Press 2000), as follows: ‘[...] Deane refuses to indulge in the full endorsement of Joyce that others have, since he is worried that the harmony produced by Joyce’s pluralism of languages and styles and his omnivorous narrative systems is the “harmony of indifference”, where “everything is a version of something else”, where sameness rules over diversity, where contradiction is finally and disquietingly written out.’ (Deane, Heroic Styles [ ... &c. ], 1984, p.16; rep. in Field Day Theatre Company, [London] 1986, p.56; McCarthy p.217.)

Atavism: the term ‘atavism’ meaning ‘tribal or collective memory’ was introduced to Irish criticism by [Seamus] Deane in an interview with Seamus Heaney (The Crane Bag, 1, 1977, p.168; see Edna Longley, ‘Poetry in the Wars’, rep. in Seamus Deane, gen. ed., The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing, Vol. 3, pp.648-54; p.649; cited in Loredana Salis, ‘“So Greek with Consequence”: Classical Tragedy in Contemporary Irish Drama’, PhD Diss., UUC, 2005.)

Strange Country: The title of Deane’s essay collection and book of 1997 may reasonably be supposed to derive from the phrase in Flann O’Brien’s The Third Policeman (1967): ‘I was clearly in a strange country but all the doubts and perplexities which strewed my mind could not stop me from feeling happy and heart-light and full of an appetite for going about my business and finding the hiding-place of the black box.’ (Picador edn., p.37.) See also, however, the attribution of the title to a poem by Deane in Gerald Dawe"s review of Collected Poems (2017) - as supra. [BS]

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