The White Blackbird; The Marginalisation of Irish Women Poets from Literary Magazines During the 1980s

Fired! Irish Women Poets and the Canon | Published / Digitised / Open Access / Honest Ulsterman |
Collection Available Online
Image: Feature Image accompanying published article

Image: Feature Image accompanying published article

Excerpted:

Ireland has been blessed with a long history of great writers. A series of names come to mind, W.B. Yeats, James Joyce, Oscar Wilde, Austin Clarke, Patrick Kavanagh, Seamus Heaney, and the list goes on. Our national literary history is a source of great pride and yet if you asked the average person to name an Irish woman poet you would almost certainly be met with the same handful of names, and in some cases, even a resounding silence.

     This neglect of Irish women poets stems from something deeper within the Irish literary community that has prevailed for generations. The establishment of an Irish Free State in 1922 provoked a drive to create a unique Irish literary identity. This newly envisaged Irish literary culture held very particular ideas relating to the proper medium for creative expression. The occlusion of women from debates relating to the shape of Irish national literature during the early twentieth century resulted in the Irish poem and the methods of critical evaluation remaining highly masculinist and ultimately resulted in the curtailment of women’s poetic agency until as late as the 1980s. Critics working from postcolonial theory have argued that the male domination of Irish literature is a consequence of Irish colonisation which caused Irish culture to develop a kind of hyper-masculinity where men who were colonised felt the need to regain their sense of masculinity by creating a literature culture built on a system of male literary inheritance.

Full article available online at URL: http://humag.co/features/the-white-blackbird

Added by Fired | Last updated on: 05 March 2019
Collection Available Online