This course surveys a range of modern Irish writing, from the so-called Renaissance of the early 1900s to the Celtic Tiger era of the early 2000s. We will be exploring several distinctive Irish themes and topics, including art and violence, literature and nationalism, language and territory, sexuality and citizenship, and gender and tradition. Readings and lectures will provide historical background and social contexts for the following main texts: W.B. Yeats's Selected Poems, J.M. Synge's Playboy of the Western World, James Joyce's Dubliners, Sean O'Casey's Juno and the Paycock, Samuel Beckett's Murphy, selected poems of Seamus Heaney and Eavan Boland, Brian Friel's Translations, Nuala Ní Dhomnaill's Pharaoh's Daughter (translated from the Irish), new plays by Conor MacPherson, and Anne Enright's The Gathering. In addition to fiction, drama, and poetry, we will also consider a small cluster of films including Omagh (2004), The Wind That Shakes the Barley (2006), and Five Minutes of Heaven (2009). Written requirements will include weekly quizzes, a 10-12 page research paper, and two essay exams.