John McGahern: Amongst Women

(1090 words)

Amongst Women recapitulates and refashions characters, themes and situations from McGahern’s first two novels, The Barracks and The Dark. The central figure, Michael Moran, is a domestic tyrant in the mould of Mahoney in The Dark, a father whose hold over his family, especially his three daughters, is “pure binding”. As a veteran of Ireland’s separatist struggle he has an obvious affinity with Reegan of The Barracks, whose bitter disenchantment with independent Ireland he savagely echoes: ‘“What did we get for it? A country, if you’d believe them. Some of our own johnnies in the top jobs instead of a few Englishmen. More than half my own family work in England …. …

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Harte, Liam. "Amongst Women". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 08 March 2001
[, accessed 04 July 2015.]