The Irish Review

The Irish Review published by Cork University Press

Kieran Keohane, IR 9

IR cover 9In issue 9 Kieran Keohane wrote about the Pogues and the way in which their music provided a model for the young emigrant Irish of the late 1980s:

The experience which the Pogues address is that of the majority of the several hundreds of thousands of Irish emigrants who have left Ireland in the 1980s, and typically end up underemployed or working in the black economy in the metropolis of Europe and North America. It is an experience born of the effects of slippage and displacement, of travelling culture. It is an expression of Irishness on the move; Irishness in London, or New York, or where ever the diaspora are.

In the Pogues we can discern a text, in fact a subtext, written in the cracks produced by the slippage and displacement of cultures. Their texts are in a sense, notes from the underground: subtexts or in-between texts of the official texts of Haughey’s Ireland, Thatcher’s Britain, Reagan’s America; a maggot’s view from inside the Big Apple, a sewer rat’s view of London.

Kieran Keohane, ‘Unifying the Fragmented Imaginary of the Young Immigrant: Making a Home in the Post Modern with the Pogues’, The Irish Review, 9 (1990), 71-79 [72]

Full text on JStor and Ingenta

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