The Wasted Island: Epistemic Friction in Revolutionary Ireland

  • John Keating
Part of the New Directions in Irish and Irish American Literature book series (NDIIAL)


Eimar O’Duffy (1893–1935) is a writer who has been marginalised in Irish literary history. His first novel The Wasted Island (1919) critiques revolutionary movements in Ireland leading up to the Easter Rising. Perhaps because of this dissident view, it has received little critical attention. Most critics have examined The Wasted Island as a historical source, leaving its literary and philosophical qualities unexplored. This chapter examines those qualities, arguing that O’Duffy accomplished far more than a thinly veiled historical account. Using José Medina’s analysis of approaches to epistemic pluralism, Keating proposes that The Wasted Island is an important literary source with which to discuss marginalised voices of the period, establishing a past–present relationship that can enrich discussions about the Easter Rising.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Keating
    • 1
  1. 1.Departmento de Filologías Inglesa y AlemanaUniversity of GranadaGranadaSpain

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