‘What rough beast’?
Monsters of post-Celtic Tiger Ireland
in From prosperity to austerity
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Kieran Keohane and Carmen Kuhling analyse the transformation that the Irish subject has undergone, and is still undergoing, in connection with the period popularly dubbed the Celtic Tiger. Looking at the history and literature of the monstrous, the chapter posits connections between Celtic Tiger and 19th century vampires, 20th century native gombeen men, to the 21st century zombie slaves that we have become, in thrall to foreign paymasters and senior bondholders. Through a series of original readings of contemporary events as recurrences, of aspects of our troubled history, this chapter identifies a profound mutation of the symbolic order and imaginative structure of Irish individual and collective identity, one whereby we lose a sense of ourselves as citizens of a democratic Republic and become again as serfs in a neo-Feudal colony within a global order of Total Capitalism. Keohane and Kuhling's discussion and argument are framed in terms of mythic history derived from Joyce and Yeats, using monstrous tropes and figures from Jonathan Swift, Bram Stoker, and Mary Shelley and from recent popular culture, all to contextualize the mutation of Irish identity into types of zombie slaves, with our souls possessed by bondholders. sent.

From prosperity to austerity

A socio-cultural critique of the Celtic Tiger and its aftermath

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