The documentary Famine Irish by Kevin Moynihan was screened on Wednesday, September 13, at Hurley’s Irish Pub by Ciné Gael. Drinks and a selection of finger foods were on offer and after the showing a Q and A was conducted with Mr. Moynihan and other key players such as Victor Boyle and Fergus Keyes, who are active in the Irish Monument Foundation.
I spent a week studying at the Trieste Joyce School in the summer of 2017 and I loved every minute of the experience. All in all, it was an incredible learning experience that allowed me to understand Joyce better, and in turn, enjoy his work more thoroughly. Trieste and the Joyce School added depth to my understanding of Joyce and motivated me to continue in my research.
The Irish short-story writer and novelist William Trevor died last November. He was 88. His readers say he is one of the best writers ever, and with titles like How We Got Drunk on Cake, how can we resist giving him a place on our reading list? I had encountered Trevor’s work before, in The New Yorker, but reading a whole book of short stories makes a big difference. You really get to see the depth of his characterizations.
September and October are two of my favorite months because the weather is just right for walking and exploring in Montreal. And for me, a walking tour is a way to experience history and an attempt to conjure up the past. However, as a Montrealer, I’m so used to thinking about this island as part of the New World that I often forget how much interesting history there is to discover right here.
Last year, I wrote about Joyce and the award-winning filmmaker Richard Linklater, who created films like Boyhood (2014) and Before Sunrise (1995). These days, I still find myself drawing comparisons between contemporary art and the work of James Joyce: most recently, David Lynch’s revival of his classic television show, entitled Twin Peaks: The Return (2017).
Last Saturday night I saw my city in a whole new dark light. That’s because I went on Haunted Montreal’s Haunted Mountain Tour led by local actor Donovan King. Donovan led our own sold-out walking tour on June 10 The History of the Irish in Montreal as part of this year’s Bloomsday festivities.