Northern Irish crime writers Anthony Quinn and Brian McGilloway will converse with crime fiction scholar and writer Andrew Pepper about the theme: “Border? What Border?: Irish crime fiction and Brexit”. The centrality of Northern Ireland in the ongoing negotiations will be an opportunity to test the ability of crime fiction to become a vehicle for representing and understanding the dramatic challenges currently faced by the European Union.
Thursday, March 21, 6:00 pm,
Peter Froggatt Centre, Queen’s University, Belfast,
Lecture Theater 02/011
All Welcome !
8-10 March 2019
Europa Hotel, Belfast
For full programme details visit: http://www.noireland.com
Some of the highlights include bestselling crime novelist Ann Cleeves, the creator of Vera and Shetland television series. Belinda Bauer whose bestselling Snap was nominated for the 2017 Booker Prize. Number one bestseller Stuart MacBride; the multi award-winning Denise Mina; Belfast’s own CWA Gold Dagger winner Steve Cavanagh and the team from RTE television’s hit series Love/Hate and Taken Down.
Nordy Noir Knocks at the Door
Northern Irish crime writers have been exploring issues relating to the landscape of the Troubles for decades within the confines of a genre that is well-placed to provide close examination of social, economic and character-driven concerns. The success of Anna Burns’s Milkman has brought attention to Northern Irish writing, with some saying now is the time, post-Good Friday Agreement, to explore the complex issues.
When Milkman won the Man Booker prize it was heralded as a win for Northern Irish literature. Yet the attention the novel’s success has brought to the Northern Irish literary scene has been met with partial disdain. After all, the Northern Irish crime-writing fraternity has been producing work that explores the complexities of social unrest and political division for decades. Writers like Adrian McKinty, Anthony Quinn, Stuart Neville, Claire McGowan, Gerard Brennan and Brian McGilloway have made great use of writing about life in a trigger-happy society, with the inherent socio-economic problems providing plentiful material for their work. However, there was something different in Milkman, something that touched a nerve and suggested that now, post-conflict, we were ready to explore our violent past in a new imaginative form.
If ever a place needed retelling, then Belfast is that place. Like most writers, I don’t fully understand anything until I have written an account of it for myself. I feel that it is only now, with time providing distance from the realities of living amidst conflict that we can examine the nuances of how the incendiary atmosphere and ongoing violence has shaped us.