Rathmines and Beyond: A Literary Heritage

Rathmines Library, front facadeDublin’s status as a literary city was recognised in 2010 by its designation as a UNESCO City of Literature. Rathmines and its surrounding areas could make a convincing argument for being the most literary quarter of our literary city. Birthplace of James Joyce, born at a time when Rathmines’ image was solid, bourgeois and red-brick, the township changed over time, so that by the early 20th century it had become a positive hotbed of political activists and creative types. As the century progressed, its large houses were divided into separate units - "flatland" came into being, and Rathmines became the first stop for many young people moving from the countryside into Dublin. This trend was discontinued in the early 21st century, but throughout all these changes, the area remained home to a wide range of journalists and novelists, poets and playwrights, writers’ groups and reading clubs, with its fine library very much at the heart of this literary activity.

Right: The facade of Rathmines Public Library, opened on the 24th October, 1913.
(Architectural and other information about the building).  

 

The map below indicates the approximate locations where these literary figures lived or hailed from. Select a place marker and be presented with some brief information about a relevant literary figure; then follow the hyperlink to more detailed information. Alternatively, select from the list below the map.


View Rathmines Writers in a larger map

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