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Synge and Edwardian Ireland$
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Brian Cliff and Nicholas Grene

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199609888

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199609888.001.0001

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Synge, Reading, and Archipelago

Synge, Reading, and Archipelago

(p.159) 9 Synge, Reading, and Archipelago
Synge and Edwardian Ireland

Nicholas Allen

Oxford University Press

Reading is a key activity in Synge’s plays. The printed word networked Ireland into a global system of news exchange. In this sense, the popular press is a written trace of the complex, contested and evolving relations that shaped the late imperial Anglophone world. Synge’s engagement with this press, and with ideas of visual and printed communication, reveals part of his own relationship to this textual economy. Following forms of reading through the serial appearance of newspapers and journals, I argue that the situation of Synge’s work in Aran, or Ireland, suggests its position in a global archipelago that runs in chain internationally through the distribution networks of empire and its cultural diasporas.

Keywords:   archipelago, empire, reading, exchange, art, Jack Yeats

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