At the time of the election in the USA I wrote that I had a sense of dread with Donald Trump becoming President. I wouldn’t have been happy with Hilary Clinton getting the job either, and wondered how such a vast country with such potential couldn’t produce better than those two candidates. My sense of dread was rekindled last...

He walks like John Wayne. He talks like Dr Phil. Who is he? He’s Al Gore, the man who once said, “I used to be the next President of the United States.”That didn’t happen but something else did. He found a life outside politics. A life of lecturing on ecology, on the way to make our world safer. Today he describes himself...

When the Church these days is besieged by scandal many seem to think that in previous generations things were different. They were certainly different, but in the sense of being far worse, as this book, by a distinguished German Catholic historian, reveals.The subtitle may seem distressingly akin to those famous propagandist books circulated in...

To mark the first 50 years of their church a group in Fahan, Co. Donegal, have produced a fine illustrated book which celebrates not just the church, its architect and its building, but the whole span of the known history of the place from the prehistoric Griannan of Aileach down to the present year. Famous churchThe architect of the now...

Teresa WhitingtonWhen he was nine years old, Tim Winton travelled by car with his family from Western to Eastern Australia: from the city of Perth to the city of Melbourne. One of the institutions the family visited was the National Gallery of Victoria.They were seeing it for the first time, and the distance they had travelled to do so was not...

I have been a reader of books of travel and exploration since I was 10 or so – by which I mean real explorers and not the self-advertising egomaniacs so common today. Books by giants of science and endeavour, such as Marco Polo, Livingstone, Sir Richard Burton, Humboldt, Waterton (an old Stonyhurst boy) and others, were devoured –...

Joe CarrollWhen World War II broke out in September 1939, it left many hundreds, possibly more than a thousand Irish men and women living in France with a dilemma; whether to seek refuge in neutral Éire or hold on to see what would happen. For those who were still there following the fall of France and the German occupation in June 1940, it was...

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