Book Reviews of Dancing at Lughnasa

Dancing at Lughnasa
Dancing at Lughnasa
Author: Brian Friel
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ISBN-13: 9780571144792
ISBN-10: 0571144799
Publication Date: 12/30/1998
Pages: 96
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.

3.3 stars, based on 4 ratings
Publisher: Faber Faber
Book Type: Paperback
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reviewed Dancing at Lughnasa on + 23 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Like Tennessee Williams' great work 'The Glass Menagerie,' 'Dancing at Lughnasa' is a memory play, drawn from the memory of a then seven-year-old Michael. Like Williams', Friel's study of family exposes the dysfunction that exists in every family (although, it exists here to a lesser degree than in any of Williams' works, but that should really go without saying,) examining specifically the summer of 1936 on an Irish farm. This is the story of five sisters, one domineering, one free spirit, one quiet unwed mother, one simple sister and one who has taken on the role of protector. Also among the cast, the sisters' brother Jack, a missionary priest recently returned by the Church of Ireland after 25 years in Africa for having abandoned Christianity for increasingly pagan beliefs, and Gerry, Michael's absent Welsh father whose appearances never fail to turn the household on its head. Masterfully written and brilliant when properly executed, Lughnasa is a wonderful examination of the impact of technology and events outside what are considered societal norms (Jack's adopted paganism, Chris' bastard son) on family.