A brilliant new translation of Ó Cadhain's modern Irish literature masterpiece, now with bonus materials on its history, reception, interpretations, adaptations, and more.
In critical opinion and popular polls, Máirtín Ó Cadhain's Graveyard Clay (Cré na Cille) is invariably ranked the most important prose work in modern Irish. This bold new translation of his radically original Cré na Cille is the shared project of fluent Irish speaker Liam Mac Con Iomaire, from Ó Cadhain's native region, and Tim Robinson, a writer and cartographer born in Yorkshire, England, and fluent in Irish. They have achieved a lofty goal: to convey Ó Cadhain's meaning accurately while meeting his towering literary standards. Graveyard Clay is a novel of black humour, reminiscent of the work of Synge and Beckett.
The story unfolds almost entirely in dialogue as the newly dead arrive in the graveyard, bringing news of recent local happenings to those already confined in their coffins. Avalanches of gossip, back-biting, flirting, feuds, and scandal-mongering ensue, while the absurdity of human nature becomes ever clearer. This edition of Ó Cadhain's masterpiece is enriched with footnotes, bibliography, publication and reception history, and other materials that invite further study and deeper enjoyment of his most engaging and challenging work; it is meant to spark debate and comparison with Alan Titley's The Dirty Dust.
MÁIRTÍN Ó CADHAIN (1906-1970) is widely acknowledged as one of the most significant writers in the Irish language and a giant among twentieth-century authors. A lifelong language-activist, he invigorated the Irish language and Irish literature with his imaginative genius.
LIAM MAC CON IOMAIRE is a writer, lecturer, broadcaster, translator and biographer.
TIM ROBINSON is a writer, artist and cartographer.
Praise for Graveyard Clay:
"This is a wonderful translation. Mac Con Iomaire and Robinson provide a meticulously faithful rendering of Ó Cadhain's rich Connemara Irish while at the same time capturing the raucous, rabelaisian humor of his classic novel." PHILIP O'LEARY, Irish Studies Program, Boston College
"A remarkable collaboration between two translators operating on the cusp between Irish and Hiberno-English, Graveyard Clay is true to the many different registers of Ó Cadhain's masterpiece. It is a version in which imaginative audacity is tempered only by sound textual scruple." DECLAN KIBERD