The White Blackbird; Laura Loftus at The Honest Ulsterman

The White Blackbird; The Marginalisation of Irish Women Poets from Literary Magazines During the 1980s

by Laura Loftus

This neglect of Irish women poets stems from something deeper within the Irish literary community that has prevailed for generations. The establishment of an Irish Free State in 1922 provoked a drive to create a unique Irish literary identity. This newly envisaged Irish literary culture held very particular ideas relating to the proper medium for creative expression. The occlusion of women from debates relating to the shape of Irish national literature during the early twentieth century resulted in the Irish poem and the methods of critical evaluation remaining highly masculinist and ultimately resulted in the curtailment of women’s poetic agency until as late as the 1980s. Critics working from postcolonial theory have argued that the male domination of Irish literature is a consequence of Irish colonisation which caused Irish culture to develop a kind of hyper-masculinity where men who were colonised felt the need to regain their sense of masculinity by creating a literature culture built on a system of male literary inheritance.

s200_laura.loftusRead the complete article at The Honest Ulsterman.