Short Stories, Irish literature, Classics, Modern Fiction, Contemporary Literary Fiction, The Japanese Novel, Post Colonial Asian Fiction, The Legacy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and quality Historical Novels are Among my Interests

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

"The Hill Bachelors" by William Trevor (1997)

Event Resources  Everyone Is Invited to Join Us for Irish Short Story Month Year Four

Ways to Participate-do a post on your blog and let me know about it-I will keep a master list and I will publicize your post and blog.

If you are an Irish author and would like to be featured, please contact me.   There are several options open.

If you would like to do a guest post on my blog on anything related to Irish short stories, contact me.

William Trevor (1928) is universally recognized as one of the greatest contemporary short story writers. I have not read nearly enough of his work.  I think my reason in part is that I find in his short stories such deeply constructed works that reading ten of them in a day would be like trying to absorb all of Middlemarch in one 24 hour stretch. 

After Irish Short Story Month Three ended in April last year I began to expand my readings into Irish poetry. I found within "The Great Hunger" by Patrick Kavanagh a  majestic expression of many of the themes of Irish literature.  One of the persistent personas in the Irish short story is that of the old bachelor, living on the family holdings, still not fully independent as he ages, waiting for his parents to pass.  Ireland was (I will leave the current state for others more informed to ponder) a sexually repressed culture in which these bachelors had so little opportunity for sex that their appetites withered. while still young.  In rural Ireland, a place where not long ago a woman who had sex outside of marriage could be placed in a mental hospital, there were not the brothels and street walkers of Dublin.  In "The Hill Bachelor" Trevor takes us into the life of a man, working the farm he inherited, he seeks a wife for a while but the local women don't want the life such a marriage brings.  We see thatmany people  want to escape from rural farm life, preferring city factory work.  In time the old bachelor just fades into the hills. 

Mel u

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