Irish Texts Society Subsidiary Series Volume 02: The Contention of the Bards (Iomarbhágh na bhFileadh) and its place in Irish Political and Literary History
SS2. Joep Leerssen, Professor of European Studies at the University of Amsterdam, has made a significant contribution to the study of Irish literature in the seventeenth century. Here, in a detailed literary historical analysis, he presents the poems comprising the Contention of the Bards, originally edited for the Society by Lambert McKenna (Main Series 20-21), as much more than a final display of bardic erudition and eloquence. He views the Contention as a unique registration of an ancient tradition coming to terms with the disintegration of both its social raison d’être and its cultural Weltanschauung.