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Irish writer's Lost male souls in search of redemption

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Aiden O'Reilly creates a world of male alienation in his 15 short stories

Aiden O'Reilly creates a world of male alienation in his 15 short stories

Aiden O'Reilly creates a world of male alienation in his 15 short stories

The title Frank O'Connor gave to his 1963 study of the short story was The Lonely Voice, its author noting that while the novel generally concerned itself with how people behaved and interacted in structured social milieus, the short story mostly focused on "submerged population groups" - in other words, on outsiders.

Such characters, O'Connor observed, were "outlawed figures wandering about the fringes of society" and he suggested that in a characteristic short story there was "something we do not often find in the novel - an intense awareness of human loneliness". Indeed, he argued, the short story, whether dealing with "Gogol's clerks and Turgenev's serfs or Maupassant's prostitutes and Sherwood Anderson's provincials", "has never had a hero".


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