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    The Censorship of O’Flaherty V.C

    Arrington, Lauren (2008) The Censorship of O’Flaherty V.C. Shaw, 28. pp. 85-106. ISSN 0741-5842

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    When opposition arose to the Abbey Theatre's scheduled production of Bernard Shaw's new play, O'Flaherty V.C, the theater had very little impe- tus to fight the objections. Ireland was in the midst of a heated debate over the country's involvement in the Great War, and even though Shaw's satire of Irish politics was "evenhanded," as described below, it was never- theless unwelcome. Shaw and the Abbey had been partners in controversy before, when Dublin Castle, the seat of the British administration in Ire- land, objected to the production of The Shewing-Up of Blanco Posnet in 1909. At that time, when Lady Gregory was summoned to the castle, she was able to present the administration with two irrefutable arguments: the Abbey enjoyed the patronage of notable figures in Dublin society, and the theater was in an increasingly firm financial position, contributing "over £1500 a year" to the Dublin economy.1 The production went ahead in defiance of government opposition and was a great financial success for the theater. Neither of these arguments - patronage nor financial stabil- ity - was available to the Abbey in November 1915. An evaluation of corre- spondence between the Abbey's directors, the financial records of the theater, and the actions taken by the British military and civil authorities in Dublin reveals that the censorship of O'Flaherty V.C was a product of Shaw's protagonist's stance that "no war is right" and the Abbey Theatre's state of financial crisis, brought on by the war, which prevented the the- ater's directors from risking the production.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: Censorship; O’Flaherty V.C;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Arts & Humanities > School of English, Media & Theatre Studies > English
    Item ID: 12903
    Depositing User: Lauren Arrington
    Date Deposited: 18 May 2020 11:46
    Journal or Publication Title: Shaw
    Publisher: Penn State University Press
    Refereed: Yes
    Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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