Life Writing

Life Writing

All the old history was written for the amusement of the ruling classes. The lower classes couldn't read, and their rulers didn't care about remembering what happened to them - Frank Zappa

Motherland
Thursday, 19 October 2023 08:09

Motherland

Written by
The idea begins to take shape after the fortuitous discovery of the pale blue savings account book, wedged between two long-expired passports, and secured with an elastic band. It belonged to my deceased mother, and it reads Postsparbuch and Deutsche Bundespost. There’s a posthorn-shaped logo near the top of it…
I'd rather be  striker than a scab
K2_PUBLISHED_ON Sunday, 15 January 2023 22:51

I'd rather be striker than a scab

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I’d rather be a striker than a scab by Michael Jarvie It’s Wednesday, the 4th of January, and yet another day of the protracted RMT strike. When I worked as a revenue protection officer at Darlington station, I was in the same union, so I fully support the strike. Besides,…
Stewart Lee is a Snowflake!
K2_PUBLISHED_ON Sunday, 26 June 2022 09:49

Stewart Lee is a Snowflake!

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Michael Jarvie reviews Stewart Lee's show, Snowflake Tornado Stewart Lee is the undisputed master of anti-comedy, or, if you like, meta-comedy. Drawing on Bertolt Brecht’s theatrical technique, which in German goes by the name of the “verfremdungseffekt” (alienation effect) he antagonises his audience in order to elicit a response, like…
The barriers to working-class writers: Review of The 32: An Anthology of Irish Working-Class Voices
Saturday, 11 September 2021 08:40

The barriers to working-class writers: Review of The 32: An Anthology of Irish Working-Class Voices

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Jenny Farrell reviews The 32: An Anthology of Irish Working-Class Voices, edited by Paul McVeigh Working-class writing is coming to the fore in Ireland. “The 32” follows the publications of two anthologies of working people’s writing, “The Children of the Nation” and “From the Plough to the Stars” (Culture Matters,…
From Lucifer to Lazarus: A Life on the Left
Tuesday, 07 September 2021 17:55

From Lucifer to Lazarus: A Life on the Left

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Jenny Farrell reviews Mick O’Reilly's From Lucifer to Lazarus: A Life on the Left (Dublin: Lilliput Press, 2019) At the end of From Lucifer to Lazarus, Mick O’Reilly raises a question many working-class authors ask themselves when writing about their lives: “whether it is worthwhile telling the story of my…
Kate Clanchy's Class Conflict
Monday, 16 August 2021 15:55

Kate Clanchy's Class Conflict

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Michael Jarvie criticises Clanchy's recent memoir, and the publishing and reviewing industry responsible for its publication and promotion Kate Clanchy’s memoir, Some Kids I Taught and What They Taught Me, was published in 2019 by Picador. Following its appearance, apart from a few dissenting voices, the reaction to the book…
Belfast in 1969 and its aftermath: a memoir
Thursday, 17 June 2021 09:11

Belfast in 1969 and its aftermath: a memoir

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Francis Murphy presents a memoir of Northern Ireland in the late sixties Introduction Once again Northern Ireland is back in the headlines. Small scale rioting in Loyalist areas and the resignation of Arlene Foster, the leader of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), reflect a growing awareness in the Unionist/ Loyalist…
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