About the author: Sarah Ferris is Earl Grey Memorial Research Fellow in the Department of English, University of Newcastle upon Tyne. She teaches on Northern Ireland’s literary history and critical approaches to Protestant writing.2002 0-7734-7274-6
This study questions the validity of John Hewitt’s prominence in Northern Irish Protestant writing and asserts the need for a more accurate history of this genre. Confronting the received wisdoms of a highly politicized discourse, it undermines Hewitt’s status within it as a matchless, acceptable Protestant for a critically re-visioned Ireland. Challenging the substance of Hewitt’s self-representations as icon of cultural liberalism, radical secular dissenter, and verse-apologist for the ‘Planter condition’, this book shows that his elevation over the majority of northern Protestants is tenable only within an incomprehensive history of Northern Irish Protestant writing that diminishes other important figures. The study provides a framework for a more equitable study of Protestant voices.