Irish novelist Glenn Patterson will read from his work on March 27 at 4:30 p.m. in the James M. Stewart ’32 Theater at 185 Nassau Street. Part of the Fund for Irish Studies series at Princeton University, the event is free and open to the public.
Glenn Patterson was born in Belfast in Northern Ireland and is best known as a novelist, though he is also a documentary filmmaker and journalist.
In his novels, his recurring theme is reassessment of the past and the complexity of history. His work has been called political, though he attributes this to a deep sense of place that pervades his novels. “Belfast is my city. That is where my imagination is most alive,” he says. “You feel almost shaped, yourself as a human being, by the buildings that are around you. It’s just unavoidable that the political backdrop is featured in the novels.”
Patterson’s most recent novel is The Rest Just Follows. Fat Lad (1992) was shortlisted for the Guinness Peat Aviation Book Award. His other novels include The Mill for Grinding Old People (2012), That Which Was (2004), Number 5 (2003), The International (1999), Black Night at Big Thunder Mountain (1995), and Burning Your Own, which won the 1988 Betty Trask Award and the 1989 Rooney Prize for Irish Literature. His memoir, Once Upon a Hill: Love in Troubled Times was published in 2008. He received the 2006 Arts Council Northern Ireland Major Individual Artist Award.
Patterson has been a writer-in-residence at the University of East Anglia and the University College Cork, and he is currently teaching in the M.A. Program in Creative Writing at Queen’s University, Belfast.
In addition to his novels, Patterson also makes documentaries for the BBC, has written plays and stories for Radio 3 and Radio 4, and co-wrote the screenplay of the 2013 film Good Vibrations, which was about the music scene in Belfast during the late 1970s. His articles and essays have appeared in The Guardian, Observer, Sunday Times, Independent, Irish Times, and Dublin Review. Lapsed Protestant, a collection of his non-fiction, was published in 2006. Here, a new collection of his writing for newspapers and radio, will be published this year.