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The Oxford History of the Irish Book. Volume V: The Irish Book in English 1891-2000.

The Oxford History of the Irish Book. Volume V: The Irish Book in English 1891-2000, Clare Hutton & Patrick Walsh. Oxford University Press. [pounds sterling] 90.00. xxv + 747 pages. ISBN 978-0-19-924911-4. In this volume the editors take the story of Irish book publishing through one of its most tumultuous periods in political, cultural and linguistic terms. The Starting date is the revival which featured writers such as Yeats, Wilde and Joyce. The decades that followed, as the contributors demonstrate, showed no lessening in publishing despite all the difficulties of the 1920s and 1930s. To cover such a large area the editors have divided the twenty-eight contributions into four sections. The first gives a chronological survey of the period in eight papers. With this admirable background the reader is next presented with 'thematic sjifveyg9 -eleven contributions that look at financial factors. Catholic publishing, the role of the stale, censorship in the Republic, regional publishing, school books, books for children, the design of books, Irish books in the USA and Australia, and the Irish book in the "informatics age". The third section with eight essays, is made up of case studies of publishers, e.g. Gill & Macmillan, the Cuala Press, Maunsel, Faber, the Dolmen Press etc. The final section has an essay on sources for the period by Patrick Walsh and three interesting appendices including one which lists those books banned between 1929 and 1976. The range of topics covered, combined with the insights offered, make this a superb compendium of learning that both introduces the topic and encapsulates the latest understandinss. (P.P.F.)

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Publication:Contemporary Review
Article Type:Book review
Date:Dec 1, 2011
Words:263
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