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Recalling the Celtic Tiger


Edited By Eamon Maher, Eugene O'Brien and Brian Lucey

This book looks at various effects, symptoms and consequences of the period in Irish culture known as the Celtic Tiger. It will trace the critical pathway from boom to bust – and up to the current beginnings of a similar, smaller boom – through events, personalities and products. The short entries offer a sense of the lived experience of this seismic period in contemporary Irish society.

While clearly not all aspects of the period could realistically be covered, the book does contain essential information about the central actors, events, themes, and economic trends, which are discussed in a readable and accessible manner. Each entry is linked to the overall Celtic Tiger phenomenon and its immediate aftermath.

The book also provides a comprehensive account of what happened in this period and will be a factual resource for anyone anxious to discover information on the areas most commonly connected to it. All entries are written by experts in the area. The contributors include broadcasters, economists, cultural theorists, sociologists, literary critics, journalists, politicians and writers, each of whom brings particular insights to some aspect of the Celtic Tiger.

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Howard, Paul (Eugene O’Brien)


Eugene O’Brien

Howard, Paul

Books, education, learning, these things have their place in the life of young men, of course. But not in yours. Because you are an élite … A good number of you will meet a fellow at your new club who will get you a highly paid, yet unfulfilling, job that requires you to wear a suit – perhaps in a bank or some other such financial institution – where you’ll open envelopes for fifty or sixty thousand pounds a year.

These words were spoken by Father Denis Fehily, a character in The Miseducation Years by Paul Howard, one of a series of books featuring the adventures of an upper-middle-class character called Ross O’Carroll-Kelly.

Ross is one of the Celtic Tiger’s most famous cubs – a rugby-playing, hard-drinking, womanising trustifarian. Beginning with self-published books, which he delivered to bookshops in his own car, Ross’ creator, Paul Howard, is now past the million copies mark in terms of sales. His list of characters are metonyms for the Celtic Tiger and all of its excesses, and he charts both the boom and the bust in a satirical and hilarious manner.

Very much in the satirical Irish literary tradition of Swift, Flann O’Brien (Myles na gCopaleen), George Bernard Shaw and Oscar Wilde, he paints a picture of an Ireland with which we can all identify. Ross’s father is a property developer, financier and corrupt politician Charles O’Carroll Kelly and his solicitor sidekick Hennessy Coughlin-O’Hara...

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