Smyllie’s Ireland: The Irish Times editor and the Protestant experience
Book review: Caleb Wood Richardson’s assured account of the former Irish Times editor’s life
RM Smyllie: For all his eccentricity, through his own unequivocal Irishness he integrated The Irish Times with the new Ireland.
The author of this book tells a good story about explaining his work to a tweedy “county” lady on the train to Cork, who responded with the sobering clincher: “No ‘twilight’ please. Every book I’ve read about us has too much ‘twilight’”.
Others clearly feel the same. The sociology of the Irish Protestant world in the decades after independence has come under renewed examination: not only Ian D’Alton and Ida Milne’s recent Protestant and Irish, but also studies by Heather Crawford, Robin Bury, Colin Murphy and Lynne Adair.