Revolutionary bodies traces a style of homoerotic writing in twentieth-century and contemporary Irish fiction. As this study demonstrates, writers in that tradition explored a broad spectrum of cultural and political concerns, while experimenting with the conventions of literary realism. We witness how, in these various works, the longing for the male body is insistently associated with utopian political desire. Developing a series of innovative readings, the argument proceeds through three author-centred chapters (Brendan Behan; John Broderick; Colm Tóibín) followed by two chapters on Irish gay fiction and ‘Celtic Tiger’ fiction. The latter two chapters focus on work by Keith Ridgway, Jamie O’Neill, Micheál Ó Conghaile and Barry McCrea, among others. Revolutionary Bodies prompts us to reconsider the relationship between aesthetics, literature and sexual liberation.
change – it makes no claims to being a history : of the lesbian and gay movement in Ireland, or of the depiction of gay men in Irish writing, or of Irishgaywriting. It is a work of literary criticism, in the precise sense that Joseph North defines, or more accurately advocates. North argues that two paradigms shaped the study of English literature in the twentieth century: criticism and scholarship. While the historical origins of the latter paradigm lie in philology, the most significant manifestation has been what North terms the ‘historical-contextual’ model of