biographies

International Women's Day - Four to Acknowledge

Mary McAleese, building bridgesToday, Thursday 8 March being International Women's Day, I thought I might make mention of just four great Irish women who have made, and continue to make, their mark on Irish society and internationally. The four are: Mary McAleese, Mary Robinson, Christina Noble, and Adi Roche. I will point you to books we have in stock that are either based on their lives or/and which they have authored themselves.

Of the four, the first that comes to my mind, for the reason that I got to meet her in Áras an Uachtaráin in June 2011, is Mary McAleese, who served as the eight President of Ireland from 1997 to 2011. 

The eldest of nine children, President McAleese was born in 1951 in Belfast and became a barrister and a Professor of Law. In 1994, she became the first female Pro-Vice Chancellor of the Queen's University of Belfast. Her lifelong interests have been in justice, equality, social inclusion, anti-sectarianism and reconciliation. 

Life stories

George Harrison biographyBiographies can make fascinating reading: one of the better ones around at the moment is George Harrison:  living in the material world, available both as a book by Olivia Harrison and as a film by Martin Scorsese. The film in particular is well worth a look, with plenty of archive footage, and contributions from the likes of Eric Clapton, Phil Spector and Eric Idle, and is an in-depth look at probably  the most well-rounded, insightful, and interesting of The Beatles.

 

Just Kids by Patti SmithJust kids Patti Smith’s account of her relationship with Robert Mapplethorpe, a relationship that  started off as teenage boyfriend/girlfriend, but developed over the years into something much deeper and more interesting. Very evocative of the art scene in 70s New York, and a deservedly popular read.

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