Obituary Note: Val Mulkerns

Author Val Mulkerns, "a unique figure in the world of Irish literature," died March 10, the Guardian reported, noting that "very few women, let alone young ones, played any sort of role in literary, academic or public life in the Ireland of the 1950s, but she thrived and enjoyed success." Mulkerns was 93.

Her first novel, A Time Outworn (1951), was published in London when she was 26. From 1952 to 1954 she was an associate editor of Ireland's most important and radical literary periodical, The Bell, befriending writers, including its founder, Seán O'Faoláin, its editor, Peadar O'Donnell, and the literary editor David Marcus.

Her books include Friends with the Enemy; Memory and Desire; Very Like a Whale; A Peacock Cry; and Antiquities.

"A feminist before her time--although she resisted all labels--Val was the last of the courageous generation of writers who wrote against the establishment in the days when new Irish fiction, far from being nurtured, was frequently reviled and banned in its homeland," the Guardian wrote.

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