Trashing Ulster: Patterson and Reid

  • Michael McAteerEmail author
Part of the New Directions in Irish and Irish American Literature book series (NDIIAL)


McAteer provides a new perspective on Northern Irish writing since the outbreak of political violence in the late 1960s. Looking at works by Belfast novelist Glenn Patterson and Belfast playwright Christina Reid, he considers excess in the connection between material waste and the idea of the parasite. Drawing upon Derrida’s notion of writing as ‘parasitology’, McAteer frames his discussion in terms of Northern Ireland itself as a political formation standing in excess of the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. He looks at how Reid’s plays represent unemployed people as excess in the form of social leftovers, and how this relates to political violence in Northern Ireland. McAteer engages ideas on violence in Sorel, Benjamin and Žižek in this analysis.


Garbage Rubbish Rats Dog Excrement Waste Unemployment Violence 

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of English Literatures and Cultures, Institute of English and American StudiesPázmány Péter Catholic UniversityBudapestHungary

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