The Centennial of W.B. Yeats’ The Second Coming (Part 2):

Things Fall Apart Today (Much Like A Century Ago)

November 19, 2020

Exactly one hundred years ago this month, at a time of deep political polarization and the Spanish Flu pandemic, William Butler Yeats published “The Second Coming”, a poem premised on the cycles of history that resonates today with striking immediacy. 

Things fall apart, the center cannot hold, the worst are full of passionate intensity... These and other enduring lines from “The Second Coming” are now part of our collective, angst-ridden vocabulary. But how does a restless, conflicted Irish playwright speak to our own age from his native Dublin a century ago? 

In Episode 15, “The Second Coming Turns 100”, we look at the historical context in which Yeats conceived and published the poem with special guest, prize-winning documentary filmmaker Briona Nic Dhiarmada, Professor of Film and Irish Studies at Notre Dame University. Prof. Nic Dhiarmada’s 8-part series, Easter 1916: the Irish Rebellion is a richly detailed chronicle of the early 1900’s with references to Yeats’ central role in promoting the Irish cultural renaissance that preceded rebellion and the war for independence.   

The Purple Principle asks Prof. Nic Dhiarmada, currently teaching from Ireland, to delineate the major influences at work as Yeats wrote and published “The Second Coming”. She details his grave personal concerns, as the Spanish Flu afflicted both his father and pregnant wife. And she does not shy away from illuminating Yeats’ own autocratic and ambivalent political tendencies, including his great doubts about the stability of a nascent democracy and the great fears arising from the demise of old empires and sudden revolution in Russia. 

How does a century old poem still speak to and for us today? Find out more about the poem, its birthplace, and remarkable composer, the Nobel Prize-winning poet, W.B. Yeats, in Episode 15, “The Second Coming Turns 100”, Part 2, with special guest, Briona Nic Dhiarmada, documentary filmmaker and Professor of Film & Irish Studies (University of Notre Dame).

Source Notes

Bríona Nic Dhiarmada | Department of Irish Language and Literature | University of Notre Dame 

“W.B. Yeats.” Encyclopedia Britannica.  

W.B. Yeats (Nov. 1920). “The Second Coming.” The Dial 68, 466. 

Viewpoint: The deadly disease that killed more people than WW1. BBC News.

John Butler Yeats: An Irishman in New York, 1907-1922. Irish Embassy.

Abbey Theatre

“The Irish Literary Revival.” The University of Cincinnati. 

Patrick Dowdall (11/12/19). “‘What Ish My Nation?’ W.B. Yeats and the Formation of Nationalist Consciousness.” Vogelinview. 

Abbey Theatre. Encyclopedia Britannica. 

“Stage Irish.” Oxford Reference Dictionary. 

“William Butler Yeats.” The Poetry Foundation. 

“Easter Rising” (2020). Encyclopedia Britannica.

David Krause (1999). “Connolly and Pearse: The Triumph of Failure?” New Hibernia Review/ Iris Éireannach Nua.: Vol. 3, No. 4.

Dawn Duncan, Austin Gerth, Elizabeth Pilon, Erika Strandjord. “Maud Gonn.” Yeats: When You Are Old.

Daniel Mulhall (5/25/20). “‘The Second Coming’: An Irishman’s Diary on W.B. Yeats and the Spanish Flu Pandemic.” The Irish Times.

Maura R. Cremin (2015) Fighting on Their Own Terms: The Tactics of the Irish Republican Army 1919-1921, Small Wars & Insurgencies, 26:6, 912-936.

Thabo Mbeki (2/24/03), “Address at the Opening of The XIII Summit Conference of the Non Aligned Movement.”

Al Gore (6/9/94). “Harvard Commencement Speech.”

Justin Abel (2014). “Beyond Fascism: W.B. Yeats’ Vision and the Complexities of his Authoritarian Politics.” Master’s Thesis, Eastern Washington University. 

David Fitzpatrick. “Yeats in the Senate.” Studia Hibernica, no. 12, 1972, pp. 7–26.

W.B. Yeats (1933). “Among School Children.”

Jim Zinsmeister (4/25/09). “A Late Bloom from a Master.” The Wall Street Journal. 

Chris Morash (2/25/15). “Given the choice of compromise or fight, WB Yeats rolled up his sleeves every time.” The Irish Times.

R.F. Foster (2011). “W.B. Yeats.” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

Geoffrey Kabaservice, Niskanen Center 

Transcript

[Archival audio, W.B. Yeats]

“Turning and turning in the widening gyre

The falcon cannot hear the falconer…”

Robert Pease (Host): 

That’s our very special guest today, William Butler Yeats, the Nobel Prize-winning Irish poet.  He’s reading his poem “The Second Coming”, which captures our collective anxiety during these polarized times. I’m Robert Pease.

Emily Crocetti (reporter):

I’m Emily Crocetti. But there’s a slight problem here. Because our special guest today is not W.B. Yeats, instead it’s documentary filmmaker Briona Nic Dhiarmada, producer of the award-winning documentary, 1916: Irish Rebellion, which covers the history of Ireland during Yeats’ lifetime.1

[Archival audio footage, 1916: Irish Rebellion]

Robert Pease (Host): 

Okay, fair enough. Yeats may have passed away in 1939.2 But it is amazing how this poem speaks to us now but was written a hundred years ago during extreme polarization and another pandemic. Plus, when Briona speaks of Yeats, it’s like he’s still here. Maybe through one of his seances.

[Archival audio, W.B. Yeats]

“Things fall apart; the center cannot hold.”   

Briona Nic Dhiarmada 

When Yeats wrote “The Second Coming” in the beginning of 1919 – it was published in 1920 for the first time and then collected later – things were falling apart.3 Interestingly enough, that period in November, we were in the middle in Ireland of the course of a different pandemic, the infamous Spanish flu of 1918-1919, which killed more people in Europe than the First World War.4 There’s no doubt that that was there as one of the personal causes, I suppose, if you like, of this incredible anxiety, this apocalyptic anxiety that he expresses so well and so wonderfully in that poem. His father was living in New York at the time, and almost died during this period in November.5

Emily Crocetti (reporter): 

You do have a point that Yeats and this poem are still very much with us, and the range of modern day references to “The Second Coming” are incredibly varied. Such as the HBO series The Sopranos.

[Archival Audio, The Sopranos]

Emily Crocetti (reporter):  

And this more recent adaptation of the poem in a Japanese anime soundtrack.

[Archival Audio, Japanese anime soundtrack]

Robert Pease (Host):  

Join us today on The Purple Principle as we discuss the creative context of one of the most analyzed, referenced, and quoted poems in the English language, “The Second Coming”, as it turns one hundred years old this month.

Emily Crocetti (reporter):   

And to do that, we’ll go back to the turn of the previous century, to the Ireland of W.B. Yeats, with filmmaker and professor of film, Briona Nic Dhiarmada of Notre Dame University. We started off by asking her about W.B. Yeats’ role as the director of the Abbey Theatre during the Irish cultural revival of the early 1900s.6

[Archival audio, W.B. Yeats]

“Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world…”

Briona Nic Dhiarmada 

The Irish cultural revolution, or the Irish cultural renaissance, was hugely important.7 The whole cultural renaissance had many different arms. If you look at cultural items throughout Europe at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, what marked a nation? First its language, second its culture. And part of the culture was literature and theater, a national theater. This happened in France, it happened in Germany, it happened throughout Europe. And in Ireland, cultural nationalists felt that this was the way that they would lay down some sort of legitimacy for an independent state. So without this cultural nationalism, there would have been really no basis, if you like, for a political independence movement.8 So all these things came together and Yeats in 1904 founded the Abbey Theater, which was to become the National Theater of Ireland.9  So what Yeats was trying to do was to provide an antidote, an alternative to the sort of stage that was going on in England. You had Irish characters on stage in England. There were these cartoon characters, basically drunken paddies or leprechaun type figures.10 What Yeats was trying to do in the National Theater, along with Lady Gregory, was to define Irishness in a different way, to give it back its dignity. It was to call on early Irish culture and early Irish literature, and, if you like, repackage that, put old wine into new bottles. But what Yeats had was this incredible ability to make words live. And we see that, of course, in his famous poem, “The Second Coming”.

Emily Crocetti (reporter):

It sounds like Yeats was almost concerned that he had created a monster in promoting the cultural revival that did eventually led to the rebellion in Ireland.

Briona Nic Dhiarmada 

I suppose what we have to remember is the context of Ireland in the late 19th century and early 20th century. The English empire, the British empire was the greatest empire in the world. It was the empire on which the sun never set. And Ireland within it was the first colony and was destined to be its last colony. It was also the first place that actually hit back at the empire in a way that began to make it crumble at its center. And that blow against the British empire happened in Dublin, in 1916, at Easter.12 And even though it failed militarily, it went on thereafter to become what was a moral victory, what again woke people out of their stupor. It’s very interesting. It was famously called a “triumph of failure”.13 And it’s a peculiar thing in the Irish psyche that these men went out, there were poets and women, a small group of men and women, many of them poets, teachers. Yeats obviously wasn’t one of those, but of course the theater would have been a hugely important part of the background noise, if you like. And of course, Maud Gonne, who Yeats was famously in love with, was a strong force there.14

[Archival audio, Maud Gonne]

“Things fall apart; the center cannot hold

Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world.” 

Briona Nic Dhiarmada 

So, basically, culture was hugely important in the rise of Irish nationalism. But Irish nationalism, I think, when we think of nationalism today, it has certain pejorative connotations. I think when you look at a situation like Ireland, at a small country like Ireland, which was under the rule of the British Empire, nationalism in those days was a progressive force. It was a force against empire, if you like. So I think all of the progressive movements of the time – the suffragette movement, feminism, nascent feminism, socialism, workers’ rights, cultural politics – all of these coalesced in Ireland around what was a greater, I suppose, a greater nationalist endeavor. 

Robert Pease (Host):

We also spoke with the great Irish poet Paul Muldoon in our last episode, which was Part I on Yeats and “The Second Coming”. And he mentioned there were more specific references to the Bolshevik revolution removed in later drafts, but not replaced by specific references to Ireland. So how is that aspect of the poem interpreted in Ireland? 

Briona Nic Dhiarmada:

Interestingly enough, at that period in November, we were in the middle of a different pandemic, the infamous Spanish flu of 1918-1919, which killed more people in Europe than the First World War. And it’s interesting because it’s something that’s almost erased from our history. You know, we hear about the First World War, we hear about all these things. We very rarely hear about the pandemic of the Spanish flu. And of course it brings it back to today, as we’re living through our new pandemic. So of course, I think that that gives Yeats’ poem an even deeper resonance for us. But it was a time of great uncertainty. His father was living in New York at the time, almost died during this period in November. So Yeats was very worried about his father. He himself didn’t get the flu, but his wife, Georgie, who was pregnant with their first child did, she was extremely ill with the flu.15 And again, she recovered, and she had a baby the following February. But during this period when he began to write that, there were those personal conditions there and they were fairly apocalyptic. 

Also, of course, in terms of the revolution in Ireland, they were in the middle of the revolutionary period. The rebellion of 1916 had happened. That blood sacrifice, if you like, had managed to get a grip on the imagination of the people. So you have all this upheaval going on when Yeats began to write, and again, that very month that he began to write this poem, what became known as the War of Independence started, the Black and Tan War. It was just after, of course, 1918, the end of the First World War, an absolute horrorscape, where you had millions of young men dead in trenches, dead in ditches. You had upheaval all over the world, particularly in the British empire that was beginning to come apart at the seams. You had the Bolshevik Revolution. And that was something, again, that Yeats really, really was taken aback by and he foretold only horror and totalitarianism and murder. So I think all of those things were playing on his mind when he wrote this poem. But I think what gives this poem its incredible importance, its incredible strength, its enduring vitality, is the fact that he didn’t put in anything specific. It speaks to 1919, it speaks to 1939. It speaks to 1969. It speaks to 2016, when you had Brexit; you had Trump elected in the U.S. You had all sorts of things happening in Europe in that year, to 2020, the year of the pandemic, when things are in flux again. 

So I think every time that we are in flux, because of the incredibly powerful nature and the oratorical power of Yeats’ poem, it speaks to us. Those lines, you know, “the center cannot hold; mere anarchy is loosed upon the world; the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity”. You know, that can speak to any period, that can speak to any sense of apocalyptic dread that we have as human beings. So I think Yeats was never specific, but managed to give voice to this existential dread that we have during periods of flux, during periods of time where we fear the apocalypse and we can still use his words, those words ring so truly.

[Archival audio, W.B. Yeats]

“The Blood dimmed tide is loosed; and everywhere

The ceremony of innocence is drowned.”

Robert Pease (Host): 

That was our featured guest today, Briona Nic Dhiarmada, Professor of Film and Irish Studies at Notre Dame, speaking to us from Tipperary on the Ireland of a century ago, when Yeats wrote and published “The Second Coming”. 

Emily Crocetti (reporter):

There’s no doubt in saying that “The Second Coming” speaks to a wide variety of people across the past hundred years, including dozens of high level leaders, such as the South African President Thabo Mbeki reciting the poem in a 2003 reference to the violence in Rwanda, Chechnya, and Afghanistan.17

Robert Pease (Host):  

Or U.S. Vice President Al Gore in a 1994 commencement speech at Harvard University.18

Emily Crocetti (reporter): 

There has also been a wide variety of writers, actors and musicians who have performed “The Second Coming” in a great variety of ways. For example, British playwright Harold Pinter, British-Irish folk rock band the Waterboys, American indie music duo Sleater-Kinney, American country music star Kris Kristofferson, Canadian singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell.

Robert Pease (Host):  

We spoke with Briona Nic Dharmiada about the remarkable endurance of the poem as well as the human weaknesses of this hugely influential poet. 

Emily Crocetti (reporter): 

W.B. Yeats was ambivalent about many things, including the more revolutionary aspects of Irish nationalism and the prospects for stable democracy without mob rule.

Robert Pease (Host): 

He had grave concerns about communist totalitarianism arising from the Bolshevik Revolution.  And, in his highly polarized time, he later had a brief flirtation with fascism during the 1930s.19

[Archival audio, W.B. Yeats]

“The best lack all conviction

While the worst are full of passionate intensity.”

Briona Nic Dhiarmada:

I think it’s kind of interesting today that we don’t have someone who’s written a poem that has anything like the power that Yeats’ words, written all those years ago, still have, that convey that sense of foreboding that we flee with global instability with whatever’s going on in American politics or in European politics, the era of Brexit, the era of Trump, or post-Trump. That sense of foreboding, how do we express that? How do we find words to express that ourselves? And I think it’s quite interesting that we’re not coming up with original ways, but we’re recycling Yeats’ words. Because they have this incredible power. And again, even though his own personal beliefs would have been quite autocratic. He toyed with fascism himself before pulling right back from it. And yet his poetry can be used in a very progressive way. If you think that someone’s feeling the sense of foreboding, and the fear that the center cannot hold, the very fact that you’re saying this actually can act as a brake on it. It’s almost like a warning. It’s when people quote that line from Yeats, “the center cannot hold. Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world”. We’re almost saying it as a prayer, as a secular prayer, let this not happen. I was reading The Financial Times over the weekend, and what am I reading? “The Second Coming” invoked in two or three articles. So I think it’s quite extraordinary that these words of Yeats still live with us, still resonate with us. We still use them to speak to our deepest fears as human beings. And yet also to our deepest hopes that this will not happen. This apocalypse will not happen if we can hold to ourselves, our own center.

Emily Crocetti (reporter): 

So, Briona, I’m wondering if the fact this poem is quoted so much is that, today, with all of our technology and social media, maybe there’s a degradation of people’s ability to absorb the power of new poetry?

Briona Nic Dhiarmada:

I also think it speaks to the power of that poem, and its longevity and the fact that it’s even more quoted than ever before. I think it speaks to the need for ritual and liturgy. It’s almost liturgical, you know, it works as liturgy. The fact that these things are known to us, we repeat them time and time and time again, that gives them a certain power. You know, people go to these sacred spaces because they’re numinous, they’re imprinted with energy, they’re imprinted with people going to these places and doing the same things. So that’s why these words that we’ve gone to time and time again act almost as a sort of secular prayer. 

Robert Pease (Host): 

If we can jump ahead a few years after Ireland gains a measure of self rule, and after Yeats has won the Nobel prize, he becomes a Senator in the Irish parliament, and he’s a little ambivalent his whole life about politics, and there he is in Parliament.20 How comfortable was he in that role? 

Briona Nic Dhiarmada:

The Irish Senate is the second house of Parliament in Ireland. So it’s not elected by the people and it’s not the primary legislator. So in a sense, it was ideal for Yeats, who was a public figure, but a very private individual. This continuous tension between the smiling public man, as he called himself one point, and this intensely private, mystical poetical figure that was at his own center and his own heart. By being a Senator, he was able to speak to this public persona.21 And in fact, he spoke very practically when he talked about education, in fact, almost at odds with this mystic poet figure. This was something he was speaking about, classrooms needed to be big, needed to be ventilated. You needed to have so many teachers in there, all these very practical issues. He was against church power, he railed against church and state.23 So in the Senate, his voice was very much one of standing up for the rights of artistic freedom. So he spoke very much to that, against censorship, against any heavy hand of state and church. And that would be the Catholic church, which of course was the church of the vast majority of the Irish people at the time. So Yeats was vehemently against this, and spoke very coherently and very strongly against the mob, that of church and state, the mob howling at the door. He became disillusioned, however, with politics. And again, in his own personal politics, he was, at the very end, 1936, he actually wrote marching songs for what was to be a failed attempt at an Irish fascist organization.24 They were called the Blue Shirts and they really didn’t take off in Ireland at all. They would just have no support whatsoever. And so it was a mild flirtation with fascism, which you could say, could very well besmirch his reputation as a poet, but yet in his poetry, his words still can be used for very progressive causes. And of course, this is something that’s very germane today. Do we throw out the baby with the bath water, if an artist has particular views that we don’t agree with, or that certainly would not be acceptable today? Does that mean that nothing they have achieved is worthwhile? And I think if we look at someone like Yeats, those words about, you know, the center cannot hold, mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, they can act very much not as invitations to either anarchy or totalitarianism, or the birth of the beast, but the opposite: to the break, to a return to the human center, you know, to the human spirit and perhaps make us think again and give us solace.

Robert Pease (Host): 

Yes, well let’s hope so. When we were speaking with Paul Muldoon, he mentioned a line from W.H. Auden’s elegy to Yeats that, “mad Ireland hurt you into poetry”. We wondered if you could comment on that. What do you think he meant? 

Briona Nic Dhiarmada:

Of course, Auden was an Englishman. That might have something to do with his comment about “mad Ireland”. But I suppose at his heart, Yeats constantly does go back to the matter of Ireland, this “great hatred, little room maimed us from the start”, a much-quoted line from Yeats, particularly during The Troubles. And of course, because Ireland has been in the state of flux, in the state of political tension, for one used to say, 800 years of oppression. So, Ireland was hugely important as the subject matter of Yeats’ poetry, as something to which he came back to time and again, something that he was incredibly ambivalent about. I think he said once that his poetry was a continual quarrel and a continual apology about Ireland, and on behalf of Ireland. 

[Archival audio, W.B. Yeats]

“Surely some revelation is at hand

Surely the second coming is at hand…”

Robert Pease (Host): 

Those were our two very special guests today, W.B. Yeats reading “The Second Coming” that still speaks to our great angst one hundred years after publication. 

Emily Crocetti (reporter):  

And Briona Nic Dhiarmada, Concurrent Professor of Film & Irish Studies at Notre Dame, giving us the context in which W.B. Yeats lived and wrote in Ireland, from his time promoting cultural nationalism in the early 1900’s to his disillusioned later years when World War II descended onto Europe. 

Robert Pease (Host):  

Don’t know about you Emily, but as we’ve been learning more about Yeats, “The Second Coming”, and Irish history, I’m also thinking about a few of our guests this season who’ve spoken on similar issues in our not very United States. 

Emily Crocetti (reporter):  

Exactly. When I hear the line, “the worst are full of passionate intensity”, I think about what Jay Van Bavel, the neuroscientist, said about doomsday cults and how people act in them, and how they become more passionate after the world doesn’t end.

Jay Van Bavel (previously recorded):

And there’s been a couple of studies where they have looked at what happens when certain cults predict the end of the world, what happens the day that the prediction doesn’t come true. What you might expect is that cult members should update their beliefs. But that’s not what happens. In fact, a couple of studies that have gone into these cults and looked at these cult members have found that if anything, the opposite happens. They immediately start to look for rationalizations. And so there’s a kernel of that psychology in human nature that applies to all kinds of identities we have, whether we’re talking about politics, and people find something terrible about their favorite party or politician and they can’t let go of it.

Robert Pease (Host): 

And when I hear that the falcon cannot hear the falconer, I’m thinking about what Dr. Robert Elliott Smith about the polarizing effects of social media.

Robert Elliott Smith (previously recorded):

Facebook really does broadcast hate speech. There’s no doubt about it. They do. And I don’t think any of the major media providers are actually deeply evil. I don’t think that’s true. I do think that the goals that we’ve programmed them with, like programming and AI, the goals we’ve programmed these corporations with may not be compatible with having an effective society. 

Emily Crocetti (reporter):   

And, I know we’ve played it before, but with respect to those most quoted Second Coming lines, “things fall apart”, “the center cannot hold”, I think Charles Wheelan of Unite America pretty perfectly echoes that in our time.

Charles Wheelan (previously recorded):

One of the scary things going on here is you’ve got a lot of different forces at work. Anyone who’s been watching TV for more than 15 years knows that’s new. The rise of television news, where you pick your ideology; the rise of social media, where not only are you hearing the echo chamber, but think about something like gerrymandering! Now, big data allows us to gerrymander better than we used to, which means more safe seats, which means the primaries matter more. They’re more expensive races. Who do you get the money from? The people who are the most extreme. Every single force is pushing us apart.

Robert Pease (Host):  

Please stay tuned for a complete and masterful reading of “The Second Coming” by the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Paul Muldoon at the end of our episode today. In our previous episode, number 14, Paul Muldoon helped us understand some of the enduring magic in Yeats’ poetry. We hope you’ll have a listen to that as well. And coming up soon on The Purple Principle, we’ll turn to a more contemporary discussion of the center not holding in U.S. politics and society.

Emily Crocetti (reporter): 

Our special guest will be the historian and columnist Geoffrey Kabaservice of the Niskanen Center. He’s the author of Rule and Ruin: On the Decline of Moderation in the Republican Party, with, maybe not surprisingly, chapter titles based upon “The Second Coming”.25

Geoffrey Kabaservice:

And life became more difficult for them after Ronald Reagan became elected in 1980, although Reagan himself was enough of a pragmatist that he understood there was a need for moderates in the GOP big tent coalition. But really the problems became worse with Newt Gingrich in the 1994 election. And with every passing year, we’re still in the 2000’s and moderates have really been marginalized in the party at this point.

Robert Pease (Host):  

Please join us for that episode, share us on social media, and visit our website, purpleprinciple.com for our blog, episode notes and other information. This is Robert Pease for the Purple Principle team: Emily Crocetti, Staff Reporter; Kevin A. Kline, Audio Engineer;  Janice Murphy, Marketing & Outreach; Emily Holloway and Johnnie Dowling, Research & Fact Checking.  

Our original music by Ryan Adair Rooney will play us out now below William Butler Yeats reading his classic poem, “The Second Coming”, which is one hundred years young this month. 

Paul Muldoon:

“Turning and turning in the widening gyre   

The falcon cannot hear the falconer;

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;

Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,

The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere   

The ceremony of innocence is drowned;

The best lack all conviction, while the worst   

Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;

Surely the second coming is at hand.   

the second coming! Hardly are those words out   

When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi

Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert   

A shape with lion body and the head of a man,   

A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,   

Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it   

Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.   

The darkness drops again; but now I know   

That twenty centuries of stony sleep

Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,   

And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,   

Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?”

1Bríona Nic Dhiarmada | Department of Irish Language and Literature | University of Notre Dame 

2“W.B. Yeats.” Encyclopedia Britannica.  

3W.B. Yeats (Nov. 1920). “The Second Coming.” The Dial 68, 466. 

4Viewpoint: The deadly disease that killed more people than WW1. BBC News.

5John Butler Yeats: An Irishman in New York, 1907-1922. Irish Embassy.

6Abbey Theatre

7“The Irish Literary Revival.” The University of Cincinnati. 

8Patrick Dowdall (11/12/19). “‘What Ish My Nation?’ W.B. Yeats and the Formation of Nationalist Consciousness.” Vogelinview. 

9Abbey Theatre. Encyclopedia Britannica. 

10“Stage Irish.” Oxford Reference Dictionary. 

11“William Butler Yeats.” The Poetry Foundation. 

12“Easter Rising” (2020). Encyclopedia Britannica.

13David Krause (1999). “Connolly and Pearse: The Triumph of Failure?” New Hibernia Review/ Iris Éireannach Nua.: Vol. 3, No. 4.

14Dawn Duncan, Austin Gerth, Elizabeth Pilon, Erika Strandjord. “Maud Gonn.” Yeats: When You Are Old.

15Daniel Mulhall (5/25/20). “‘The Second Coming’: An Irishman’s Diary on W.B. Yeats and the Spanish Flu Pandemic.” The Irish Times.

16Maura R. Cremin (2015) Fighting on Their Own Terms: The Tactics of the Irish Republican Army 1919-1921, Small Wars & Insurgencies, 26:6, 912-936.

17Thabo Mbeki (2/24/03), “Address at the Opening of The XIII Summit Conference of the Non Aligned Movement.”

18Al Gore (6/9/94). “Harvard Commencement Speech.”

19Justin Abel (2014). “Beyond Fascism: W.B. Yeats’ Vision and the Complexities of his Authoritarian Politics.” Master’s Thesis, Eastern Washington University. 

20David Fitzpatrick. “Yeats in the Senate.” Studia Hibernica, no. 12, 1972, pp. 7–26.

21W.B. Yeats (1933). “Among School Children.”

22Jim Zinsmeister (4/25/09). “A Late Bloom from a Master.” The Wall Street Journal. 

23Chris Morash (2/25/15). “Given the choice of compromise or fight, WB Yeats rolled up his sleeves every time.” The Irish Times.

24R.F. Foster (2011). “W.B. Yeats.” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

25Geoffrey Kabaservice, Niskanen Center 

1994
2017

In 1986, 34 Democratic and 29 Republican Senators signed the Immigration Reform and Control Act, creating a citizenship path for illegal immigrants while making it a Federal crime to employ illegal workers. The House also voted in favor, 238 to 173. The bill was signed into law on November 6, 1986. 

congress.gov

In 1972, 17 Republican Senators joined 35 Democratic Senators to override the Nixon Administration veto of the Clean Water Act, a landmark piece of environmental legislation. The House override vote was 247 to 23, including 96 Republicans and 151 Democrats in the majority.

govtrack.us

  • Question for Team Purple?
  • Want to offer Feedback on our Podcast?

GET IN TOUCH