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Festschrift for Tadhg Foley


Edited By Maureen O'Connor

This Festschrift for Professor Tadhg Foley of the National University of Ireland, Galway, who retired in 2009, gathers together international contributors in the fields of poetry, politics and academia to honour this great man’s life and work. Professor Foley has not only been central in the development of Irish Studies and Colonial/Postcolonial Studies in Ireland and in the United States, but he has also enjoyed a long career as convivial host in his thatched cottage in Salthill, Galway. He remains one of the most popular and beloved figures in Irish academia. Among the eminent scholars included in the volume are Terry Eagleton, Robert Young, Penny Boumelha, David Lloyd, Luke Gibbons, Joep Leerssen and Maud Ellmann. The book is further enriched by poets Bernard O’Donoghue, Louis de Paor, Rita Ann Higgins, Michael D. Higgins and Tom Duddy. This collection is a rare and distinctive gathering of true and resonant voices, offering a unique portrait of late twentieth-century Irish literary and academic culture and its interplay with the United States.


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Des Temps Perdus Gabriela M. Steinke 297


Des Temps Perdus Gabriela M. Steinke Tadhg Foley’s academic achievements will find worthy acknowledgement from those better qualified to give them their due. I will use the occasion of Tadhg’s retirement to look back, not over the entire quarter of a century or so of our acquaintance, but right back to the beginning of our friend- ship, to that remarkable academic year of 1983–4. It was the second year I spent in Galway as a DAAD-Lektorin in the German Department of University College Galway, and that year I joined the ranks of the many people who were at one time or another lodgers in ‘The Thatch’, surely one of the most hospitable houses in Ireland. The house is a good house but is made special by its owner. If ever there was a man to be called a catalyst, it is Tadhg Foley. Things happen around Tadhg, and it is neither nostalgia nor remembrance of lost youth that make that year stand out as one of the fullest of my life. On first acquaintance, Tadhg was a rather unassuming young(ish) man, then a junior lecturer in UCG. We met at a party in Evi’s cottage in Knock- nacarra (and how that area has changed, it was practically in the country then!), where Tadhg was chiefly remarkable for sitting quietly with a fairly full pint of homebrew in his hand, apparently nodding off, but never spill- ing a drop and every now and again answering a question or chipping...

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