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Eoin McNamee in Conversation with Kevin Power

To celebrate the appointment of Eoin McNamee as Director of the Oscar Wilde Centre for Irish Writing, the School of English hosted a reading and reception in the Trinity Long Room Hub on Monday 27th October. The event was opened by Head of School Prof. Jarlath Killeen, who spoke about the necessity of recognising the creative arts as a central part of what universities do, and the significance of the Oscar Wilde Centre for Irish Writing being housed in the building where Oscar Wilde himself was born in 1854. Dr. Kevin Power then introduced Eoin, citing his novels Resurrection Man (1994), The Ultras (2004), Orchid Blue (2010), and Blue is the Night (2014), as evidence that Eoin is one of the most important and original writers currently at work in Ireland, and formally welcoming Eoin to the Oscar Wilde Centre and the School of English.

Eoin McNamee began by reading his short story “The Comets,” a powerful tale of childhood trauma set in a desolate resort town, originally published in All Over Ireland (Faber, 2015), an anthology edited by Eoin’s Oscar Wilde Centre colleague Deirdre Madden. Eoin then spoke to Kevin Power about his writing process, his inspirations, and his sense of what beginning writers need to know as they set out on a writing career. He explained that was attracted him to a given subject was what Don DeLillo called “the sinister buzz of implication,” and discussed the challenges of dramatizing historical events, as in his “Blue” trilogy. He said that in his view the quality a writer needed most was patience. He closed the evening by reading from the closing pages of Orchid Blue, after a vibrant Q&A session with a sell-out audience.


Dr Kevin Power, Assistant Professor and Eoin Mcnamee, Director of Oscar Wilde Centre for Irish Writing