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UCD Library Collection Spotlight: Irish Drama featuring Christopher Murray
CHRISTOPHER MURRAY has been a pioneer and inspiration in the critical field of modern and contemporary Irish drama, as the authors of many books on the subject are keen to testify in their dedications and acknowledgements.
Born in Galway in 1940 he attended University College Galway/NUIG and gained a BA with First Class Honours in 1962. After an MA, he went to Yale University, where he was awarded the PhD in 1969. In 1970 he joined the Department of Modern English and American Literature at UCD and was subsequently promoted to Statutory/Senior Lecturer and Associate Professor. In 1990 he co-founded the graduate programme in Modern Drama Studies and was first Director of the UCD Drama Centre. From 1987 until 1998 he was Editor of the IRISH UNIVERSITY REVIEW and is currently Chair of the Board of the Gaiety School of Acting in Dublin.
Murray has published over 100 articles and chapters in books. He is a world authority on twentieth and twenty-first Irish drama, publishing a seminal book on the subject in 1997, and has particular expertise on Sean O’Casey (his authoritative biography appeared in 2004) and Brian Friel, on whom he has published widely. He remains active in retirement, having published Brian Friel: Tradition and Modernity in 2014.
Text provided by Prof. Anthony Roche.
The Irish University Review Special Edition
The Irish University Review was founded in 1970 at University College Dublin as a journal of Irish literary criticism. Since then, it has become the leading global journal of Irish literary studies.
Irish University Review publishes in May and November each year and is affiliated to the International Association for the Study of Irish Literatures (IASIL)
Read about the review and the editors of this journal
The Christopher Murray Donation
contribution to UCD
- influence and scholarship in this area
- great encouragement and support
given by him to UCDstudents and researchers
The books /DVDs purchased from this donation have greatly supported student learning and helped to build up our collections in this subject area. Book plates were placed in books purchased with this donation.
Gifts to UCD Library from Christopher Murray
The UCD Authors’ Collection has received a donation from Emeritus Professor of English, Chris Murray, of signed copies of the many books and articles that he published during his long career in the UCD School of English, Drama and Film.
In addition to his own publications, he has also donated a valuable eight-volume work on the 18th and early 19th century theatre: Theatre in Dublin, 1745 – 1820, which will form part of the Special Collections reference collection.
Chris Murray, Eugene Roche of UCD Library and the donated work, May 28th 2015
- Twentieth Century Irish Drama by Christopher MurrayCall Number: 822.09 IR MUR James Joyce General and Short Loan CollectionsISBN: 0719041570Publication Date: 1997-10-01Murray provides an overview of a nation's theatre read in the light of a nation's self-definition. Mediating between history and its troubled relation with politics and art, he shows the preoccupations of Irish drama.
- Sean O'Casey by Christopher MurrayCall Number: 822 IR OCA/M James Joyce General CollectionISBN: 0717127508Publication Date: 2004-01-01Christopher Murray's work on Sean O'Casey is a critical biography. In addition to the normal biographical elements, Dr Murray provides a strong interpretative context for the life. For example, he looks afresh at the Dublin of the 1880s and 1890s in order to provide an updated background to O'Casey's childhood. He pays a great deal of attention to the political situation from 1880 to 1922, setting it against O'Casey's own treatment in his six volumes of autobiography. In general he attempts to establish O'Casey's Ireland.This leads naturally to a fresh examination of the great Dublin trilogy, The Shadow of a Gunman, Juno and the Paycock and The Plough and the Stars, the three works on which O'Casey's reputation stands. The rejection of his next play, The Silver Tassie, by the Abbey Theatre precipitated O'Casey's move to England.
- The Theatre of Brian Friel by Christopher Murray; Csilla Bertha (Contribution by); David Krause (Contribution by); Shaun Richards (Contribution by)Call Number: 822 IR FRI/ M James Joyce General CollectionISBN: 9781408154496Publication Date: 2014-06-19Brian Friel is Ireland's foremost living playwright, whose work spans fifty years and has won numerous awards, including three Tonys and a Lifetime Achievement Arts Award. Author of twenty-five plays, and whose work is studied at GCSE and A level (UK), and the Leaving Certificate (Ire), besides at undergraduate level, he is regarded as a classic in contemporary drama studies. Christopher Murray's Critical Companion is the definitive guide to Friel's work, offering both a detailed study of individual plays and an exploration of Friel's dual commitment to tradition and modernity across his oeuvre.Beginning with Friel's 1964 work Philadelphia, Here I Come!, Christopher Murray follows a broadly chronological route through the principal plays, including Aristocrats, Faith Healer, Translations, Dancing at Lughnasa, Molly Sweeney and The Home Place. Along the way it considers themes of exile, politics, fathers and sons, belief and ritual, history, memory, gender inequality, and loss, all set against the dialectic of tradition and modernity. It is supplemented by essays from Shaun Richards, David Krause and Csilla Bertha providing varying critical perspectives on the playwright's work.
- Brian Friel by Brian Friel; Christopher Murray (Editor, Introduction by)Call Number: 822 IR FRI/M James Joyce General CollectionISBN: 0571200699Publication Date: 2000-02-28Since the success ofPhiladelphia, Here I Come!in 1964, Brian Friel has written over twenty plays, successively confirming his reputation as a major dramatist of the twentieth century. But Friel had written plays and short stories before that, giving up his teaching job to become a full-time writer in 1960 and living for part of that time in the United States. This collection of essays, diary extracts and interviews from 1964 to 1999 delves into his work and life both before and after his landmark play. Highlighting his working processes and analyzing the work in relation to both social and political sensibilities, the volume offers a wealth of material in celebration of a writer described by the Observer as "the most profound and poetic of contemporary Irish dramatists."
See Prof. Murray's research page in the School of English staff listing
IASIL website. IUR is affiliated to the International Association for the Study of Irish Literatures (IASIL), whose members receive the journal as a benefit of association membership. Membership costs from 20-45 euro a year, including online or print copies of the journal, 2 issues a year.
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