Category: Books

She knew what she wanted

House of Cards, a novel by Alice Curtayne (Cluny Classics, £14.50/$17.95) We often hear it said that before the rise of modern feminism, marriage was seen as the summum bonum of a woman’s ambitions. In Alice Curtayne’s compelling novel, first published in 1939, an Irishwoman makes it indignantly clear that this was not the case in…

Philosophers arguing for God’s existence

The Ontological Argument, a critique from a Thomistic perspective by J. Anthony Gaughan (Kingdom Books, €15.00) Donal Murray In this book, Fr Tony Gaughan has undertaken a careful and thorough reflection on what Patrick Masterson, President Emeritus of UCD, describes in his foreword as “one of philosophy’s perennial and still fascinating preoccupations”. Generations of philosophers, theologians…

The real wonder of the human body

Fearfully & Wonderfully: The Marvel of Bearing God’s Image by Dr Paul Brand & Philip Yancey (Hodder Books, £9.99; Kindle edition, £9.99) These days, with the daily news dominated by medical fears of all kinds and our inability to cope, many people all too conscious of the frailties of the human body and the effects that…

The spirituality of married love

Conjugal Love: A Path to God edited by The Friends of Father Caffarel (€14.00; available from Married Spirituality, 66 Mount Albany, Blackrock, Co Dublin A94 AC81 at www.marriedspirituality.com ) Any discussion on this book must begin with Fr Henri Caffarel. He was born in Lyon, France, on July 30, 1903. From his earliest years he exhibited…

Margaret MacCurtain

An appreciation by Felix M. Larkin Sr Margaret MacCurtain, who died on October 5, aged 91, was an outstanding academic historian, but was better known to the public at large as a feminist and social activist. She taught for 30 years in University College Dublin, where she was revered by generations of students. A member…

A great Irish scholar’s essays preserved

Celtic Studies in Europe and other Essays by Seán Ó Lúing (Geography Publications, €38.00/£29.99) This collection of interesting essays by the late Seán Ó Lúing, the noted scholar, can be categorised under three headings: autobiography, the Irish language and Higher Studies. Those on staff of the Institute of Advanced Studies are particularly valuable. They provide biographies…