The Vibrant House

Irish writing and domestic space


Rhona Richman Kenneally & Lucy McDiarmid, editors

Paperback €26.95
Catalogue Price: €29.95
ISBN: 978-1-84682-648-1
October 2017. 256pp; colour ills.

'Oh my god I love this book. It's like going for endless cups of tea into the inner sanctums of the finest of places and people. It's got this way of endlessly going inward to the place we're all searching for; home. I can't stop reading it. It's like you put it together just for me', Helen O'Leary, painter.

'From the ground surveyed by architectural historians, geographers, and scholars of folklife, this fresh book flowers with a bounty of images, memories, and fine writing to enrich our understanding of the house, the home, and the act of dwelling, while welcoming us into the common Irish homes that stand between the Georgian mansion and the thatched cabin', Henry Glassie, Indiana University.

'By drawing attention to the quotidian materiality of Irish domestic space this engaging book bravely puts together scholarly and non-scholarly approaches to address larger existential questions of belonging. The attention to the visual, spatial and material nature of 'home' is thoughtfully unpacked through discussions of interior architecture, personal memory, fiction, poetry, drama and film, in a variety of tones that invoke reflective questions of interiority, privacy, status and cultural representation. By examining how we connect to, experience and 'see' home, this collection gives us a template for how to overlay textual analysis, memoir, and visual culture in a manner rarely seen within Irish literary or historical studies', Elaine Sisson, Institute of Art, Design and Technology.