NUI Galway Historian Praises Book by Retirement Group

Tuesday, 19 December 2006

19 December 2006: A leading lecturer in history at NUI Galway has praised a book of short stories and poems by Galway-based senior writers as a "precious collection of stories about bygone times and a wonderful Christmas gift". The book 21 - An Anthology, comes from the Salthill/Knocknacarra Active Retirement Writers Group, and is edited by well-known Irish author Michael Gorman.

Many of the stories retrieve a rich written heritage, reflecting a world that has long passed with stories of childhoods in Ireland in the 1940s and 1950s.

According to Dr. Caitriona Clear, Lecturer in History, NUI Galway, "The recent past is often farther away from us than the distant past, a time that seems only slightly different but belongs to a different culture, a different way of looking at the world. These stories bring back memories of only cold water in the tap, ice on the inside of bedroom windows, the Rosary in the evening in every house, and boxes of biscuits strapped onto the backs of bikes brought to cousins' houses in the days coming up to Christmas. 21 - An Anthology captures the texture of life we would otherwise forget about".

Michael Gorman, a Programme Director at NUI Galway's International Summer School for Writers, who facilitated and compiled the book, comments "My instinct in preparing this collection was to preserve what is most easily endangered, that which is close to hand. I have always been drawn to reticent people rather than those who shout loudest. So, here, in their own words, are twenty-one individuals from all over Ireland who have lived, worked in or retired to Galway".

In a poignant twist, the book is dedicated to some of the 21 authors who have passed away since the time of writing, making 21 - An Anthology an even more precious collection of writing.

NUI Galway's Adult and Continuing Education Centre has been involved in working with and supporting Active Retirement groups in Galway city and county for the past ten years.

21 - Anthology is published by NUI Galway and can be purchased for just €10 from Áras Fáilte, the information centre on campus.

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