Hogan Robert and Richard Burnham
The Art of the Amateur 1916-1920

The Art of the Amateur 1916-1920


ISBN: 978-0-85105-372-1

21.6 x 13.8 cm   368 pp.  1984    Volume 5 of  The Modern Irish Drama, a documentary history

The Art of the Amateur, the fifth volume in the documentary history, The Modern Irish Drama, describes and documents the Irish theatre from 1916-1920, some of the most turbulent years of the emerging nation. Against the background of the Easter Rising in Dublin and its violent aftermath, and of the Great War in Europe, the authors chart how the Irish theatre coped with, mirrored, and curiously, often ignored the trauma of the times.

As the authors of The Art of the Amateur note, the theatre, especially the theatre as entertainment, flourishes in times of public horror. With the deaths of Pearse, MacDonagh, MacSwiney and Sean Connolly, the Abbey player, there was more than enough horror. If few masterpieces immediately emerged, the stage in the period covered in this volume, both public and private, was being set for the emergence of the plays of Sean O’Casey and Denis Johnston.

The Modern Irish Drama, of which The Art of the Amateur is the fifth volume, is a documentary history with transcriptions of contemporary reviews and full cast lists. As The Irish Press commented, ‘Professor Hogan and his distinguished collaborators . . . have produced a rich, fascinating and, to the drama-junkie, indispensable book on a generally neglected period of Irish theatrical history.’

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