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Wednesday 25

The Real Maria: Reading and Selecting from Maria Edgeworth’s Original Letters, 1782-1849

Valerie Pakenham (Editor of Maria Edgeworth’s Letters From Ireland) will bring insight to Maria Edgeworth’s life through the many letters she wrote in an extraordinary span of Irish history.

The Anglo-Irish writer Maria Edgeworth features in The Long Gaze Back anthology with a short story called, ‘The Purple Jar’. January 1st 2018 also marks the 250th anniversary of the birth of Maria, who was born in Black Bourton, Oxfordshire in 1768.

Maria was a prolific and fascinating letter writer. She insisted that her letters were for private consumption only, but after her death, her stepmother and half-sisters produced a private memoir for friends using carefully selected extracts. Their literary quality was spotted by Augustus Hare, whose shortened version, ‘The Life and Letters of Maria Edgeworth’, appeared in 1894.

Valerie Pakenham has recently edited, ‘Maria Edgeworth’s Letters From Ireland’ (Lilliput Press). Valerie worked as a journalist in London at Condé Nast and the Daily Mail before her marriage to the writer Thomas Pakenham. Her most recent book is, ‘The Big House in Ireland’, an anthology published in 2001. She has lived in Westmeath, fourteen miles from Maria Edgeworth’s old family home in Edgeworthstown, for over fifty years and is familiar with many of the places described in the letters. The Pakenham and Edgeworth families intermarried in the early eighteenth century and were close friends across several generations.

Exclusive offer to RDS Members:

RDS Members who book for this talk and attend, will be entered in a free draw with a chance to win a signed copy of Valerie’s book, ‘Maria Edgeworth’s Letters From Ireland’. The draw will take place after the talk on April 25.

The above talk is admission free but prior booking is essential.

Voluntary donations by attendees to assist in covering costs are welcomed.

Venue

RDS Library, Ballsbridge

Time

April 25 at 6:30 pm

Tickets

Free

Booking

Booking essential

Our Stories Ourselves (BOOKED OUT)

To celebrate the 2018 Dublin: One City One Book choice, The Long Gaze Back, we invite you to enjoy a special evening of readings, discussion, and songs featuring authors Anne Enright, Christine Dwyer Hickey, Lisa McInerney, editor Sinéad Gleeson, dramatised readings from actor Cathy Belton, and music by acclaimed singer and musician Lisa Hannigan.

Anne Enright was the inaugural Laureate for Irish Fiction. A leading contemporary voice, her work has won many awards including the Man Booker for The Gathering in 2007 and the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction for The Forgotten Waltz in 2012. Her latest novel The Green Road was shortlisted for the International Dublin Literary Award in 2017. She lives and works in Dublin, her native town.

Sinéad Gleeson is the editor of The Long Gaze Back and The Glass Shore, two anthologies of stories by Irish women writers.Her own collection of essays Constellations will be published in 2019 by Picador.

Christine Dwyer Hickey has published seven novels, one short story collection and a full-length play. The Cold Eye of Heaven won the Irish Novel of the Year 2012 and was nominated for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. Tatty was nominated for the Orange Prize and was one of the 50 Irish Novels of the Decade. Her short story collection, The House on Parkgate Street  was published in 2013. Her latest novel The Lives of Women, was published in April 2015.

Lisa McInerney’s work has featured in Winter Papers, The Stinging Fly, Granta and BBC Radio 4 and in the anthologies Beyond The Centre, The Long Gaze Back and Town and Country. Her debut novel The Glorious Heresies won the 2016 Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction and the 2016 Desmond Elliott Prize. Lisa’s second novel, The Blood Miracles, was published by John Murray in April 2017. 

Madeleine Keane is the Literary Editor of the Sunday Independent

Cathy Belton is an acclaimed actor. Her recent screen credits include PhilomenaA Little Chaos directed by Alan Rickman and My Name Is Emily, (dir. Simon Fitzmaurice). She recently acted in Mark O’Rowe’s play The Approach.

Lisa Hannigan has released three albums: Sea Sew (2008), Passenger(2011), and At Swim (2016). Her music has received award nominations both in Ireland and the USA.

Venue

Great Hall, Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Dublin 8

Time

April 25 at 7:30 pm

Tickets

Free

Booking

Booking essential
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