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O'Casey, Sean: letters, May 1937- Dec 1957

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0096 AL362
Held at: Senate House Library, University of London
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Full title: O'Casey, Sean: letters, May 1937- Dec 1957
Date(s): 1937-1957
Level of description: fonds
Extent: 14 items
Name of creator(s): O'Casey | Sean | 1880-1964 | playwright and writer x Casey | John x O'Cathasaigh | Seán


Administrative/Biographical history:

Sean O'Casey was born John Casey in Dublin in 1880. He joined the Gaelic League in 1906 with the intention of learning the Irish language, adopting the name Seán O'Cathasaigh, but later re-Anglicizing the surname as O'Casey. He also became involved in the Irish Transport and General Workers Union set up by Jim Larkin to represent unskilled workers and in 1914 became General Secretary of Larkin's Irish Citizens Army. He had several works performed at the Abbey Theatre in Dublin in the 1920s but after his play The Silver Tassle was rejected by the Abbey in 1929 he severed all links with the theatre. He then moved to England where he wrote Within the Gates in 1934, Purple Dust in 1940 and Red Roses for Me in 1953. He died of a heart attack in Torquay in 1964.


Scope and content/abstract:

14 letters from Sean O'Casey to Peter Newmark, May 1937- Dec 1957. Topics covered include: literary critics and criticism; the Communist Party; the Roman Catholic Church; plays and playwrights; and the writing of O'Casey's works and their publication and performance in Britain, Ireland and the USA. Individuals mentioned include: James Evershed Agate, Samuel Beckett, Ugo Betti, T S Eliot, Jean Giraudoux, Eugčne Ionesco, Eugene O'Neill, George Orwell, John Osborne, Terence Rattigan, Jean-Paul Sartre, and W B Yeats.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

See hard copy catalogue.

Conditions governing access:

Access to this collection is unrestricted for the purpose of private study and personal research within the supervised environment and restrictions of the Library's Palaeography Room. Access to individual items in Senate House Library archives collections may be restricted under the Data Protection Act or the Freedom of Information Act. Please contact the University Archivist for details. 24 hours notice is required for research visits.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copies may be made, subject to the condition of the original. Copying must be undertaken by the Palaeography Room staff, who will need a minimum of 24 hours to process requests.

Finding aids:

Typescript catalogue available in the Library's Palaeography Room.

Archival Information

Archival history:

See archivist

Immediate source of acquisition:

Gift from Mr P Newmark, 1967.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Compiled by Anya Turner.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Aug 2008

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