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Diary

Louise Foxcroft: W.B. Yeats and her great-uncle, 7 September 2000

... Times reported that in two days’ time the corvette Macha would leave Cork for Dublin, and that Sean MacBride, the Minister for External Affairs, would join the ship on its journey to Villefranche, where the casket said to contain the poet’s remains would be collected. The Macha would then return to Sligo Bay, where a state funeral was being ...

Permission to narrate

Edward Said, 16 February 1984

Israel in Lebanon: The Report of the International Commission 
by Sean MacBride.
Ithaca, 282 pp., £4.50, March 1984, 0 903729 96 2
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Sabra et Chatila: Enquête sur un Massacre 
by Amnon Kapeliouk.
Seuil, 117 pp.
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Final Conflict: The War in the Lebanon 
by John Bulloch.
Century, 238 pp., £9.95, April 1983, 0 7126 0171 6
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Lebanon: The Fractured Country 
by David Gilmour.
Robertson, 209 pp., £9.95, June 1983, 0 85520 679 9
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The Tragedy of Lebanon: Christian Warlords, Israeli Adventures and American Bunglers 
by Jonathan Randal.
Chatto, 320 pp., £9.50, October 1983, 0 7011 2755 4
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God cried 
by Tony Clifton and Catherine Leroy.
Quartet, 141 pp., £15, June 1983, 0 7043 2375 3
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Beirut: Frontline Story 
by Salim Nassib, Caroline Tisdall and Chris Steele-Perkins.
Pluto, 160 pp., £3.95, March 1983, 0 86104 397 9
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The Fateful Triangle: Israel, the United States and the Palestinians 
by Noam Chomsky.
Pluto, 481 pp., £6.95, October 1983, 0 86104 741 9
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... of Israel’s 1982 invasion of Lebanon an international commission of six jurists headed by Sean MacBride undertook a mission to investigate reported Israeli violations of international law during the invasion. The commission’s conclusions were published in Israel in Lebanon by a British publisher: it is reasonably clear that no ...

Memoriousness

E.S. Turner, 15 September 1988

Memories of Times Past 
by Louis Heren.
Hamish Hamilton, 313 pp., £15.95, July 1988, 0 241 12427 1
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Chances: An Autobiography 
by Mervyn Jones.
Verso, 311 pp., £14.95, September 1987, 0 86091 167 5
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... to write a long, time-consuming report for Unesco at the request of ‘the distinguished Irishman, Sean MacBride’, which, though it brought excursions to Paris. Delhi and Acapulco, turned out ‘futile and degrading’. The hardest part was writing the report in sterile officialese, for Mervyn Jones is very far from being a jargonaut. What greatly ...

Let’s Do the Time Warp

Clair Wills: Modern Irish History, 3 July 2008

Luck and the Irish: A Brief History of Change c.1970-2000 
by R.F. Foster.
Penguin, 228 pp., £8.99, July 2008, 978 0 14 101765 5
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... chieftain and Tammany boss’. Foster is a master of the flick-knife aside (elsewhere we get Seán MacBride as Bela Lugosi, and Ted Kennedy as ‘a notoriously slow learner’). Foster argues at several points that Haughey’s Ireland needs its Balzac, and this book is best read as a satire. He puts himself on the side of the ‘boosters’ of Ireland’s ...

Issues of Truth and Invention

Colm Tóibín: Francis Stuart’s wartime broadcasts, 4 January 2001

The Wartime Broadcasts of Francis Stuart 
edited by Brendan Barrington.
Lilliput, 192 pp., £25, September 2000, 1 901866 54 8
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... an tSaoi has her own elevated co-ordinates. She is married to Conor Cruise O’Brien. Her father, Sean McEntee, fought in the Irish War of Independence and was a minister in most of Eamon de Valera’s Governments. Her uncle was a cardinal. Every schoolchild of my generation knew her poems, written in Irish, by heart. She is a formidable presence at any ...

My Darlings

Colm Tóibín: Drinking with Samuel Beckett, 5 April 2007

... day it is easy to go into the GPO in O’Connell Street without a single thought for MacDonagh and MacBride and Connolly and Pearse, or without remembering for a second that Samuel Beckett once asked his friend Con Leventhal to betake himself ‘to the Dublin Post Office and measure the height of the ground to Cúchulainn’s arse’, as Neary in his novel ...

A Djinn speaks

Colm Tóibín: What about George Yeats?, 20 February 2003

Becoming George: The Life of Mrs W.B. Yeats 
by Ann Saddlemyer.
Oxford, 808 pp., £25, September 2002, 0 19 811232 7
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... she liked him as a man’. Now she oversaw the poet’s legacy with canniness and care. When John MacBride, Maud Gonne’s estranged husband, was executed after the 1916 Rising in Dublin, Yeats talked once more of marriage to Maud Gonne, and then became involved with her daughter Iseult, to whom he also proposed. Joseph Hone writes about this in his ...
... worth spying on. Clarke began to associate with a few young members of the Brotherhood, notably Sean MacDermott, 26 years younger than him, whose gregariousness masked an ability to be secretive and determined. Slowly and with difficulty, Clarke and MacDermott set about moving into positions of authority within the IRB, Clarke almost accidentally slipping ...

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