Tom O'Flaherty [Tomás Ó Flaithearta, 1889-1936]

Aranmen all

Brandon Book

Dingle (Co. Kerry), 1991

bibliothèque insulaire
Aranmen All / Tom O'Flaherty. - Dingle : Brandon books, 1991. - 192 p. ; 20 cm.
ISBN 0-86322-123-8
PUBLISHER'S DESCRIPTION : Tom O'Flaherty, older brother of Liam (author of The Informer, Famine and many other books) was born and reared on Inis Mór, the largest of the Aran Islands ; he left Ireland in the early years of the century for America.

A socialist and republican, he was a comrade in the US of James Larkin, John Reed and James Cannon. Writing fluently in both Irish and English, he contributed newspapers, including An tEireannach. He returned to Ireland where he died on inis Mór in 1936.

His stories bring to life the world of Aran at the turn of the century. Almost every page is dominated by the sea, with its harvest of fish, seaweed and the flotsam and jetsam of shipwrecks, and with its constant threats of storm and drowning. There are stories, too, about eviction, land war, emigration and return.
THE SPECTATOR 3 August 1934 : “ Mr. Tom O'Flaherty avoids the extreme methods of contemporary Irish realism in his first book, Aranmen All. Many years spent in America have enabled him to appreciate more deeply the ways and customs of his native island of Aran Mor.

Like his brother, the well-known Irish novelist, Mr. Liam O'Flaherty, he knows the islanders thoroughly, but his sketches and stories have a kindly note of their own. Atlantic storms, the dangers endured by the fishermen in their frail curraghs, tales of ancient prowess or of strange sea monsters told around the fire in winter — these are the subjects on which he writes.

It is many years since Synge went to the Aran Islands, but recently they have been really " discovered ". Mr. O'Flaherty gives us intimate and fascinating glimpses of a primitive community which as yet remains unspoiled, despite the influx of the Gaelic language enthusiasts. […] ”

[en ligne]
EXTRAIT We pass Gregory's Sound that divides Inismaan from Aran. We turn by Straw Island in towards the little harbour of Kilronan. I am glad to be back again ; but I am sad also. For underneath the tombstones in the little churchyard on the sandy shore of Killeany lie the remains of many of those who bid me a tearful farewell when I left Kilronan pier twenty-one years ago !

I find my breath coming quicker. There is a queer dryness on my lips as the boat slows down and crawls the last few hundred yards. A jangling of bells, a stamping of feet, a shout from the shore and then at last with a bump and a grunt the Dún Aonghus ties up a the pier.

Without waiting for the gangway I leap the rail. I am home ! Home in Aran !

Home at last, pp. 191-192
  • « Aranmen all », Dublin, London : At the sign of the Three candles, Hamish Hamilton, 1934
  • « Cliffmen of the West », London : Sands & Co., 1935
  • « An Bhrachlainn Mhór » Tom O'Flaherty’s short stories newly ed. by Éamon Ó Ciosáin, Indreabhán (Co. Galway) : Cló Iar-Chonnachta, 2020

mise-à-jour : 18 décembre 2020
Tom O'Flaherty : Aranmen all