The lost girls : teenage pregnancy in contemporary Irish fiction and film

Heaney, Olivia (2010) The lost girls : teenage pregnancy in contemporary Irish fiction and film. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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This dissertation explores the in-between state of young female protagonists in three contemporary Irish texts: Roddy Doyle's The Snapper (1990), Edna O'Brien's Down by the River (1993) and Peter Mullan's 2002 film, The Magdalene Sisters. All three texts introduce young girls who, faced with unwanted pregnancies, have to make decisions about having children--or, more often, choices are forced upon them--despite the fact that they are still largely considered children themselves. Their situations gesture toward the fact that young girls in Ireland have not yet been afforded the level of citizenship to which they are entitled. During their pregnancies, the circumstances of which are often hushed and denied, they lack social and political power. Thus, not only are the girls lost between the categories of child and woman, but their agency is lost because of the precarious positions they hold. Their inability to demonstrate their rights of citizenship represents Ireland's failure to "cherish the children of the nation equally"--a fundamental goal of its original Proclamation as a Republic.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 9601
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 95-103.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > English Language and Literature
Date: 2010
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Doyle, Roddy, 1958---Snapper; Mullan, Peter; O'Brien, Edna--Down by the river; The Magdalene sisters. 2002; Irish literature; Pregnancy in literature; Teenage girls in literature

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