Seamus Deane is one of the most vital and versatile writers of our time. This book presents an unmatched survey of Irish writing and of writing about Irish issues, from 1798 to the present day. Elegant, polemical and analytic, it addresses the political, aesthetic and cultural dimensions of several notable literary and historical moments and monuments of the island’s past and present. The style of Swift, the influence of Edmund Burke in the USA of the present day, the echoing debates about national character, aspects of Joyce’s and of Elizabeth Bowen’s relation to modernism, memories of Seamus Heaney, analysis of the representation of Northern Ireland in Anna Burns’ fiction constitute only a partial list of the themes included in this exhilarating book. These essays from one of Irish literature’s most renowned critics have individually had a piercing impact and are collectively amplified by being gathered together here. Small World: Ireland, 1798-2018 is an indispensable collection from one of the most important voices in Irish literature and culture.