The Awkward Squads

The Awkward Squads : and Selected Short Stories

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In The Awkward Squads the men of Bilboa meet among the ruins of Rhamus Castle to prepare for the defence of the cause of Ireland: across the lough, in Fermanagh, the loyal Lowth Castle Infantry is re-assembled under their motto of Croppies, Lie Down . Then one night the two squads encounter each other in a battle worthy of the traditions of old Ireland. Inspired by the creation of rival militias in reaction to the 1880 s Home Rule crisis Shan Bullock captures the fears and tensions of the Protestants of Fermanagh and Catholics of Cavan decades before they were divided by partition. Comic and prophetic, The Awkward Squads is a lost masterpiece of Irish writing. This is the first selection of Shan Bullock s short stories, stories which share the psychological focus and social analysis of those of George Moore and James Joyce. Including A State Official where the fate of Dan the postmaster foreshadows the political violence that would spread through Ireland.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 160 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 11mm | 158g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0957233647
  • 9780957233645
  • 1,415,573

Our customer reviews

'The Awkward Squads' are selection of short stories from Fermanagh's first major writer, Shan Bullock. They are stories that depict the frustrations and comedy of rural life in the late nineteenth-century while responding to the conflicts and tensions that still dominate Northern Irish politics. Shan Bullock's short stories drew on the social changes and political crisis of late nineteenth-century Ireland. 'A State Official' portrays the threat of the Land League, predicting the violence that would spread through Ireland decades later. 'The Awkward Squads' is a satirical account of the Home Rule crisis of the 1880's where Fermanagh's farmers form the Loyal Lowth Castle Infantry under the motto 'Croppies, Lie Down' in opposition to the farmers of Cavan, across the lough, who have united to defend 'the cause of Ireland', a foreshadowing of the partition of Ireland. The Awkward Squads makes Bullock's short stories available for the first time in a century. In 1903 the Irish newspaper 'The United Irishman' described Bullock's writing as "the finest Ulster-maybe the finest Irish-stories of this generation". In his fiction Bullock defined a specific Ulster regional identity, and it is this sense of Ulster's uniqueness that makes Bullock one of the founders of Northern Irish more
by James Doyle