Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
To date, Northern Ireland's Frank McGuinness and Michael Longley have received meagre critical attention from scholars. Although it has often been assumed by certain artists and critics that the mixing of art and politics is merely a tool for propagandists, McGuinness' plays, Carthaginians and Someone Who'll Watch Over Me, and Longley's poems concerning the Troubles illustrate a healthy intersection of literature with politics. This thesis attempts to analyze how these writers use displacement or imaginative distance as a strategy for illuminating the political and cultural contexts of the North. This indirect engagement in its myriad of forms reflects McGuinness and Longley's quest for a creative realm of displaced perspectives--a place elsewhere. Longley and McGuinness write about their own conscious experiences and those of their various communities through frameworks that are mythically, historically, geographically, and intertextually remote. Both artists seek to render conditions in Northern Ireland symbolically and, thereby, circumvent political ideologies and posit alternative visions to conflict and violence.
Lapointe, Michael Patrick, "A Place Elsewhere: Displacement in Frank McGuinness' and Michael Longley's Response to the Northern Irish 'Troubles'" (1994). Open Access Dissertations and Theses. Paper 5960.
McMaster University Library