Sunday 18th


On the Edge

Historian and author Diarmaid Ferriter reading from and discussing his new book On The Edge: Ireland’s Offshore Islands, A Modern History.

Followed by Q&A.


Clew Bay Hotel



Diarmaid Ferriter

Historian and author  returns to The Rolling Sun Book Festival with his new book On The Edge – Ireland’s off-shore islands: a modern history. Diarmaid will read from his book and talk about it. Followed by Q&A.


By documenting the island experiences and the social, cultural and political reaction to them over the last 100 years, On the Edge, published by Profile Books, examines why this exodus has happened, and the gulf between the rhetoric that elevated island life and the reality of the political hostility towards them. It uncovers, though state and private archives, personal memoirs, newspaper coverage, and the author’s personal travels, the realities behind the “dreadful rocks”, and the significance of the experiences of, and reactions to, those who were and remain, literally, on the very edge of European civilisation.


Diarmaid Ferriter is Professor of Modern Irish History at UCD. His books include The Transformation of Ireland 1900-2000 (2004), Judging Dev: A Reassessment of the life and legacy of Eamon de Valera (2007), Occasions of Sin: Sex and Society in Modern Ireland (2009), Ambiguous Republic: Ireland in the 1970s (2012) A Nation and not a Rabble, The Irish Revolution 1913-23 (2015). His latest book On The Edge: Ireland’s Offshore Islands, A Modern History, has just been published. He is a regular broadcaster on television and radio and a weekly columnist with the Irish Times. He co-wrote the film Keepers of the Flame (2018) with Nuala O’Connor.