Vol. 7 No. 7 (2017)
Miscellanea

“That name is a wealth to you”: The Necropolitics of the Great Famine, and the Politics of Visibility, Naming and (Christian) Compassion in Joseph O’Connor’s “Star of the Sea”

Danijela Petković
Laboratorio editoriale OA / Dip. LILSI
Published June 8, 2017
How to Cite
Petković, D. (2017). “That name is a wealth to you”: The Necropolitics of the Great Famine, and the Politics of Visibility, Naming and (Christian) Compassion in Joseph O’Connor’s “Star of the Sea”. Studi Irlandesi. A Journal of Irish Studies, 7(7), 321-341. https://doi.org/10.13128/SIJIS-2239-3978-20764

Abstract

The paper discusses Joseph O’Connor’s novel as an investigation of a necropolitical event par excellence – the Great Famine. The mass production of dead bodies through poverty, starvation and disease is coupled with O’Connor’s struggle against necropower via the politics of visibility and naming of the victims, which results in the transformation of the necropolitical “acceptable losses” into Butlerian “grievable lives”. Naming the novel after the Virgin Mary, moreover, O’Connor engages in a complex relationship with Christianity: critical of the officials’ role in maintaining poverty, he does not negate the radical potential of the doctrine of inclusive love.

Metrics

Metrics Loading ...