George O’Brien

George O’Brien teaches English at Georgetown University in Washington DC. His memoir, The Village of Longing, was reissued in 2001.

No boozing, no donkeys: Hugo Hamilton

George O’Brien, 10 July 2003

Hugo Hamilton was born in 1953 to an Irish father and a German mother. When he was growing up, as he writes in this remarkable memoir, he spent a lot of time trying to prove that he wasn’t a Nazi. But he never could. The sight of somebody in lederhosen and an Aran sweater was irresistible to the local bullies. Later, his peers at the prestigious Coláiste Mhuire were just as...

In the Line of Fire: The Sniper

George O’Brien, 28 November 2002

Horrible and shocking as the shootings on the first day were, there was still the possibility that they would be containable. It was difficult to imagine the actual killings, of course, or to claim to know what might be going on. But at least, initially, the scenario was recognisable. It wasn’t as if this particular assailant had invented multiple killing. Shortly before he opened up,...

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