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1999-2000 Visiting Fellows

Donald McNamara, Ph.D. Candidate

Department of English
Catholic University of America

It is now one year since I concluded my visiting fellowship, and I just wanted to thank you again for the opportunity extended to me by the Friends of the Library.

I am nearly finished with my doctoral dissertation, "Flann O'Brien and Liam O'Flaherty: Refashioning Myth and Nationhood," and I do not exaggerate when I say that I may not have been able to get it done without the Princeton University Library.

Among the many titles that were helpful to me were Early Irish Literature,Flann O'Brien's Exorbitant Novels, and Old Order and New: The Split World of Liam O'Flaherty, and Crazy John and the Bishop. Oddly enough, one source that was helpful to me was one I reviewed after my fellowship had concluded (I was working as an English professor at The College of New Jersey and thus had limited access privileges). With the help of Mary George, I was able to read back issues of the United Irishman, a turn-of-the-century newspaper printed in Dublin. This material was extremely valuable to me, and I thank Ms.George for her help in having it brought from the annex to Firestone Library.

Finally, although the letters and journals of General John Maxwell, the British military commander in Dublin after the Easter Rising, could not yield any information pertinent to my thesis, they were fascinating to peruse, and I found that I could have spent my entire fellowship going through them.

Once again, my thanks to you and all the members of the Committee for awarding me a fellowship for 1999-2000. It was quite helpful and enjoyable, and just being in Firestone was an enriching experience.


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