The Great Recoil: Politics after Populism and Pandemic
In this insightful, thought-provoking and ultimately hopeful book, Italian sociologist and political theorist Paulo Gerbaudo argues that the devastating recession which followed the 2008 financial crash and the more recent Coronavirus pandemic have led to The Great Recoil.
Poetry Reading with Michael Corrigan and Frank Phelan
Visit Dublin City Library & Archive for an eclectic evening of entertainment as we celebrate Culture Night. Enjoy a mixed programme of live music, readings and presentations. Beidh fáilte romhat, bígí linn.
5.30pm Poetry Readings with Michael Corrigan and Frank Phelan.
Twentieth anniversary of the passing of Éamonn Mac Thomáis
His videos have hundreds of thousands of views across YouTube, Instagram and TikTok, though he had never heard of any of them. He has inspired a whole new generation of social historians that were born after he died.
The first book in this series called The Darkness, is penned by Ragnar Jonasson and it is an atmospheric thriller set in the stark, bleak yet bewitching and enchanting landscape of Iceland. The impact of the isolation on the people lends itself to be the ideal setting for a crime novel.
Irish writer Maggie O’Farrell's novel wins major €33k prize
Maggie O’Farrell has won the 2020 Women’s Prize for Fiction for Hamnet, her novel inspired by the life and death of Shakespeare’s only son. It was chosen from a shortlist that included the Booker Prize winning Girl, Woman,
When my parents discovered the Happy Pear in November 2019, I thought to myself, ‘this is going to be another one of their phases’. For instance, a few years ago my father took up jam making. It’s not that my parents can’t cook. On the contrary, they can cook, very well! It’s that, when they decide that they like something, they throw themselves wholeheartedly into it… and then two months later, they have moved on. The jam sugar with added pectin… well, it’s still in the press.So who could blame me for being a tad sceptical, when my mother asked me to borrow two Happy Pear cookbooks from BorrowBox? Being the dutiful daughter that I am, I did. For those of you who haven’t heard of the Happy Pear, they are Irish twins, David and Stephen Flynn. They have written several cookbooks on Vegetarian and Vegan cooking. Part of their philosophy is to get people to eat more fruit and veg and in order to accomplish this; they have made their dishes as tasty and appealing as possible.The Happy PearThe first book that I borrowed was “The Happy Pear’’. It’s the first cookbook by the duo, and I can see why it’s a bestseller! First, it’s packed full of colourful photos showcasing their dishes. It’s really important to me as a reader that I have a good idea of how the finished product should look. The book is divided into sections, breakfasts, soups, mains etc. It’s easy to navigate and the ingredients are simple and inexpensive to source.I have tried many, but not all of their recipes. One of the recipes that stood out to me is the ‘Falafels with Red Pepper Relish’. What I love about this dish is that it is tasty and easy to make. It’s light and perfect for summer. Another favourite of mine is their ‘Thai Coconut, Sweet Potato and Lemongrass Soup’. This recipe has minimal preparation time; it’s ideal for mid-week lunches. Also, check out their ‘Happy Pear House Salad With Pumpkin Seed And Parsley Pesto’. It took me fifteen minutes to prepare and it’s super tasty! What more could you ask for? The final chapter of the book includes a glossary of the pair’s favourite ingredients that they use in their recipes. It explains what each ingredient is and why you should incorporate them into your diet. All in all, for a debut cookbook, this one is a hit!The Happy Pear: Recipes for HappinessThe second book that I borrowed was “The Happy Pear: Recipes for Happiness’’. In my opinion, this cookbook contains more summer recipes than it’s previous counterpart. Which is perfect, because we are right in the middle of summer! One of my favourite recipes in the book is the ‘Ultimate Fifteen Minute Burger’. The burgers can be cooked in the oven or on the barbecue, so you can enjoy this delicious recipe all year round! I can’t get enough of their ‘‘Meatball’ Sub’. It is a versatile recipe that works well for both lunch and dinner. Also, I would recommend that you try the duo’s ‘Quick-Fire Burritos’. It is one of their tastiest recipes and has become quite the go-to recipe for me. It’s so quick to make and if you are on a budget, you can’t go wrong. I am also a huge fan of their ‘Gluten Free Bread’. It’s healthy, tasty and great with homemade jam. A major selling point for me is that their recipes are inexpensive- they work on any budget. The Happy Pear even includes a chapter in the book on budgeting and meal planning. They show the reader how to prepare a week of meals on a small budget. The meals are tasty, healthy and don’t break the bank! I really enjoyed this book. It’s definitely a firm favourite of mine.Access eBooks/eAudiobooks on your phone, tablet or reader. Once you have installed the app, search for Dublin in the ‘Library’ field provided and then sign in using your library membership card number and PIN. Watch our how to video on Borrowbox. Members of other library authorities will need to log in using a different link.Submitted by Eimear from Raheny Library.
The strength of a biography of the artist lies in the reader’s desperate willingness to explore and re-examine the fruits of the artist’s labour. On completing William Shatner’s autobiography Up Till Now, I studied the author’s revolutionary interpretation of Henry V (or Henry Five as the author refers to it); his Maoist deconstruction of the role in Michael Langham’s 1953 production led to a reconceptualisation of the art of acting - a counterpoint to Christopher Plummer’s more classical interpretation.To be sure, there are three aspects to this autobiography: firstly, Mr. Shatner has an opinion on everything, his quicksilver mind often leads the reader on an intellectual tangent through a postmodern thicket; secondly, the author is a raconteur of the highest order - his scuttlebug on the film and television industry is only matched by David Niven’s The Moon’s a Balloon; thirdly, his analysis on his approach and practice of his craft.Mr. Shatner’s development of ‘Shatnerism’ - the iconic mellifluous, halting and staccato cadence; his use of the ‘loud whisper’; the iconoclastic urgency - engulfs all the roles he inhabits: observe the sinister Adam Cramer in The Intruder (1962); consider his avant-garde Mark Anthony in Julius Caesar (1955); reflect on his personification of LBJ’s ‘Great Society’ as Captain Kirk in Star Trek (1966-1969). These landmark performances only whetted the appetite of this reader for the work of this acting colossus that I have yet to see. I yearn to see ‘Shatnerism’ in action in the metaphysical horror written entirely in Esperanto, Incubus; or White Comanche (1968) whither Mr. Shatner plays the dual roles of the peyote addicted twin brothers Johnny Moon and Notah.Imagine, if you will, a man, an artist who boldly goes where no other Canadian actor has gone before - narrating an audiobook version of Ulysses: ‘Stately. Plump. Buck Mulligan. Came. From the stairhead. Bearing a bowl. Of. Lather. On which. A. Mirror. And a. Razor lay……………...Crossed.’ Set phasers to stunning.Up Till Now by William Shatner is available to download on Borrowbox. Access eBooks/eAudiobooks on your phone, tablet or reader. Once you have installed the app, search for Dublin in the ‘Library’ field provided and then sign in using your library membership card number and PIN. Watch our how to video on Borrowbox. Members of other library authorities will need to log in using a different link.Submitted by Tom in Drumcondra Library.
‘The book is better’ is a well rehearsed librarian’s film review. Well usually the book is better, but in this case, ‘Jaws’ is the original summer block busting film and a watershed (pardon the pun) in cinema history. You can’t turn on the television these days without ‘Jaws’ or the sequels being screened on one station or another. Everybody can quote the lines, wear the t-shirt, and play the theme tune on the piano. But what of the book from which it originated?To some extent the success of the film resulted in the book being eclipsed and latterly somewhat dismissed. But the novel sold 5.5 million copies in USA by the time the film was even released. Written by Peter Benchley, published in February 1974, ‘Jaws’ spent 44 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list. The film rights to the book were bought before it was even published, with the film directed by Steven Spielberg shot and released shortly after in June 1975. So it’s got to be worth a read right?FilmThe characters are recognisable from the film, but differ in many regards. Similarly the story varies on major areas of plotline, not least who survives to tell the tale, and the fate of the fish. The story is pretty much akin to the film - a great white shark is dining on bathers off the coast of Amity a seaside resort town, Long Island, New York.The local police chief tries to temporarily close the beaches to keep bathers from harm, and figure a way to deal with the shark. He finds there are more slippery fish to deal with on land than the one in the water. Particularly in wrangling corrupt Mayor Vaughan and his selectmen who want to retain those tourist dollars and keep the beaches open for financial health of Amity.The chief must hire Quint and Hooper’s expertise, leave his wife and kids, and take to the seas to deal with his community’s pest control issues. So far so familiar, but there are key differences which make this an edgier take than the film, and may for some, be unpalatable.Chief Martin Brody born and bred in Amity is a blue collar cop, wary of the well healed out of towners who invade the island every summer. He is a man of duty and pragmatism in service to his community. Quite a lot of the films lighter moments are channelled through Spielberg’s chief Brody. But Benchley’s Brody is sullen; he wears his working class roots in earnest, his police stripes with great pride, and his authority with dedication. Benchley’s Brody is wracked with self doubt and insecurities about his worth and potency. He is driven by a will to prove his value and protect those around him.BookBook version Ellen Brody is a different fish to the film version Ellen Brody. Benchley’s Ellen Body is to an extent a trophy wife. She’s a step up for Brody from his own people. She’s missing her life before marriage and children. She fears she settled for Martin Brody. Her need to feel vital sees her turn sexual predator, her flirtations leading to subsequent infidelity that will either drive her away from or back into her husband’s arms. She’s not the Spielbergian archetypical Mom and certainly won’t be offering anyone coffee ice-cream.Mayor Larry Vaughan is willing to sacrifice consumers to keep beaches and business open. Exploiting the coastal environment in which he exists, he maintains devotion to the almighty dollar. Benchley doesn’t give Vaughan a moment of humanity – he’s not a crazy anchor motifed suit wearing caricature. There is no ‘My kids were on that beach too’ moment of redemption here. Vaughan is the villain. In fact it transpires in the book Vaughan is actually protecting a real estate deal with mafia investment. To Mayor Vaughan the shark is an economic problem, not a public health issue. Benchley’s Mayor Larry Vaughan is the manifestation of rogue materialism. Vaughan eventually cuts his losses and does a runner.Ichthyologist Matt Hooper is a charmless man. He is a rich graduate, slick, egotistical and unlikable. He is a man of science, but conversely not a man of reason. Potentially he may be able to control nature, but as we see he cannot even curb his own desires. His dalliance with another man’s wife, in satisfying his lust and realising his blinkered selfish will, is a harbinger of wherein lies his fate. His scientific equipment and college earned education are all there is between him and the shark. There is no bottle of red and white wine, this Hooper doesn’t care about anyone except himself.Quint is a professional shark hunter the skipper on a small vessel called the Orca. Quint is the indigenous sage. He knows things about his local environment. He has learned through experience not books. Quint though is driven by his will to conquer and master all he surveys. He uses instinct and brute force. Quint in the book is particularly cruel and nihilistic- a harpoon too far in the books case. (I have to say at this point that Robert Shaw’s ‘Indianapolis Speech’ is the best scene in ‘Jaws’ bar none, maybe even the best film monologue ever. ‘So eleven hundred men went in the water, 316 men came out, the sharks took the rest, June the 29th 1945. Anyway, we delivered the bomb’. But Benchley didn’t write it).The shark is dispassionate, a cold eyed monster, with no anthropomorphic traits, its motivation is pure survival. The shark can be read as anti-capitalist allegory, the shark as a basic threat to profit that must be eradicated. Or the shark may represent the unpredictable force/ mans primal fear of nature. Or some sort of castration symbolism and comment on modern manhood. Or whatever you’re having with your chips and mushy peas. The shark in the book ‘Jaws’ doesn’t have the same fate as the film.The shark hunting in the book is a matter of livelihood, and prestige. The relationship between the men on the Orca is tense and terse – ego reigns. They do not get along and seem to really hate each other. There is no bonhomie, no joining together. They are all motivated by separate drives. If they just put aside ego and operated as a collective, for the greater good, they might stand a better chance of survival. But with this individualism - who lives, who dies is unpredictable – can they redeem themselves?Book versus filmSo why bother with the book if the film is so good? Well the book is a solid page turner and a great summer read. It is a rawer take on all scores than the film. ‘Jaws’ can be read in COVID-19 days as a teaching on the pandemic, the economy, on political mistrust. A basic indiscriminate force of nature threatens death upon a society already beset by problems. Politicians protect the economy ahead of public health. Business as usual reigns in the hopes the contagion will kill only a few in its lifetime and burn itself out.Alright it may be regarded as a dime store read but it actually has a literary lineage. ‘Jaws’ greatly resembles Henrik Ibsen’s play ‘An Enemy of the People’ in which the mayor of a small spa town copes with a water contamination that might drive away the tourists and the town’s chance of survival. The comparisons to Herman Melville’s ‘Moby Dick’ too are inevitable, with the pursuit at all costs of a large fish. And it’s not so far-fetched as you’d imagine either - the book is reminiscent of the Jersey Shore shark attacks of 1916, where fatalities numbered 4, and 1 seriously injured by a bull shark.‘What had once seemed shallow and tedious now loomed in memory like paradise’, Peter Benchley.Submitted by Sleeve Notes Drumcondra Library.