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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: October 22, 2010 @ 5:09 pm

    The Case of Roger Casement

    Deaglán de Bréadún

    Winner of Nobel Prize for Literature turns his attention to our very own Roger Casement: the results should be interesting. Click here for more information.

    • fem/me says:

      ‘One of the stately homo’s of Ireland’…I believe to praphrase Quentin Crisp….Should test your PC mettle…!

    • D Ruane says:

      Llosa won the Nobel prize “for his cartography of structures of power and his trenchant images of the individual’s resistance, revolt, and defeat”. I doubt his preoccupation will be with Casement’s sexuality. Certainly it won’t be in the prurient way that some people feel obliged to treat it.

    • fem/me says:

      Jones and Page describe Casement variously as ‘Martyr Traitor Liberator Predator’…
      The editorial director at Faber states that scholars on both sides of the debate will be intrigued to see where Llosa stands on the ‘Black Diaries’…deemed ‘unfortunately’ to be the’ major fascination about Casement’ by Séamas Ó Síocháin…
      I think it’s safe to assume his pederasty will be given due prominence…
      …Anyway must return to my book about inter alia the sexual proclivities of that other giant of Irish Politics…Charles Stewart Parnell…

    • D Ruane says:

      I suggest reading Llosa’s various interviews about the subject if you want to know more. His main concern would seem to be with Casement’s struggles between his imperial past and anti-imperial convictions, and with his witnessing of the brutality visited upon indigenous peoples. You might also find out his opinions about the Black Diaries. He is evidently capable of dealing with Casement’s sexuality in its proper context and in a mature fashion, unlike many in Britain and Ireland.

    • fem/me says:

      Just as I have no interest in reading about the intimate details of the sexual practices of homosexual/paedophile priests…I have no interest in reading articles about the homosexual/paedophile practices of erstwhile homosexual politicians…As indeed I expect they would/have no interest in the intimate details of the sexual practices of heterosexual women…why would they…?
      So if you don’t mind I’ll give the articlea and Black Diaries a miss…A woman’s right to choose…a concept anathema to Irish men I know…!

    • D Ruane says:

      Let me put it in simple terms, then. In the first instance, Llosa was skeptical about the authenticity of the Black Diaries, based on his extensive research. Latterly, he has come to believe that he actually wrote them, but they do not reflect his actual experience. Hence, Llosa does not believe Casement was a paedophile. A homosexual, yes, but that, surprisingly enough, is not the same thing.
      Your assumptions seem to extend to my gender. Interesting.

    • James says:

      Amazing how a discussion that should rightly focus on the diplomatic achievements of Casement and indeed a mature analysis of the controversies related to the Black Book should degenerate into something as farcical as a woman’s right to choose. You display some interest in the Casement private life by quoting Quentin Crisp and then state that you’ll give the article and the Black Diaries a miss. So why bother commenting in the first place. The feminist agenda is not at issue here and your comments are childish…especially when suggesting what is and what is no anathema to Irish men….whom I think you know very little about.

    • Leaving the issue of the Black Diaries and their authenticity aside, it is clear that Casement was one helluva human rights activist who would be very much in his element working for Amnesty or Human Rights Watch today. In his day also it must have taken even more courage. Re the Diaries, does anyone remember some years back whent a supposed autobiography of Khrushchev appeared. Then there were the Hitler Diaries, which fooled some well-qualified people.

    • fem/me says:

      Yep…I expect that was it…Casement was championing the ‘Human Rights’ of those teenage boys…bit like those priests were tending to their Spiritual needs….!

    • Jeff Dudgeon emailed me to say that, because of some technical glitch, the system wouldn’t accept this comment so I am publishing it for him. Deaglán

      Jeff Dudgeon writes: “Deaglán de Bréadún starts by writing “leaving the issue of the Black Diaries and their authenticity aside.” However his resolve lasts one sentence before he infers they were forged. Does he not recall the Irish government funding a scientific analysis of the diaries which found they were in Casement’s handwriting?

      Casement was someone described by Martin Mansergh, correctly, as the “forerunner of Ireland’s independent foreign policy”. But the TD seems to remain a denialist, having described the diaries’ author as someone who had “absolutely no conscience in regard to his own sexual life [and being] as predatory towards the natives as those he criticised.”

      This and the accusation of paedophilia by other forgery theorists makes it now impossible for any self-respecting nationalist to accept the diaries as authentic. The controversy is therefore doomed never to end.

      It is important however to point out that the diaries do not depict sex with forest Indians on the Amazon nor Africans in the Congo jungle, people who might be categorised as “natives”. Casement records things he saw everywhere, but only sexual things that he did in urban settings.

      Mario Vargas Llosa is a novelist and will presumably be writing about Casement in an imagined way even if he uses facts to detail his life story. Just read Llosa’s description and understanding of Generalissimo Trujillo in the superb novel Feast of the Goat to get an idea. It certainly wasn’t romantic but it was gripping.

      We await ‘Dream of the Celt’ which was also the title of Casement’s book of poems on his heroes Hugh and Owen Roe O’Neill (and their Ulster woodkern) who had seen off the Saxons and the Scots.”

    • fem/me says:

      ‘the diaries do not depict sex with the forest indians on the Amazon nor Africans in the Congo jungle people who might be categorized as native…only sexual things he did in urban settings’
      To paraphrase Mandy Rice-Davis…’he would do that wouldn’t he’…?


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