Clair Wills | Missing Persons, or My Grandmother’s Secrets

Sun 21 Apr 2024 | 6:00pm - 7:00pm

Clair Wills - Missing Persons
Sinead Gleeson

How could a whole family and a whole country abandon unmarried mothers and their children, erasing them from history? Cultural historian Clair Wills delves into her compelling family history. A detective story, memoir, cultural history and devastating work of literary non-fiction, Wills’ book unearths the story of her unknown cousin and of Ireland’s missing children.  

In conversation with Sinéad Gleeson


Venue: Old Divinity School

Duration: 1 hour

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Old Divinity School
  Clair Wills | Missing Persons, or My Grandmother's Secrets Full Price
6pm | Sunday 21 April | Old Divinity School
  Clair Wills | Missing Persons, or My Grandmother's Secrets Concession (U25s, unwaged, and those feeling the pinch)
6pm | Sunday 21 April | Old Divinity School
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Author biography

Clair Wills currently holds the prestigious position of King Edward VII Professor of English Literature at the University of Cambridge and Regius Professor of English Literature.  She is also a critic and cultural historian. She is the author of Lovers and Strangers: An Immigrant History of Post-War Britain, which won the Irish Times International Non-Fiction Book of the Year and was shortlisted for the Orwell Prize, That Neutral Island: A History of Ireland During the Second World War, which won the PEN Hessell-Tiltman History Prize, Dublin 1916, The Best Are Leaving, and most recently The Family Plot: Three Pieces on Containment.

Chair Biography

Sinéad Gleeson’s essay collection Constellations: Reflections from Life won Non-Fiction Book of the Year at the Irish Book Awards and the Dalkey Literary Award for Emerging Writer. She is the editor of four anthologies including The Art of the Glimpse and the award-winning The Long Gaze Back: An Anthology of Irish Women Writers, and The Glass Shore: Short Stories. Sinéad has engaged in multi-disciplinary collaborations with artists and musicians, including commissions from The Wellcome Collection, BBC and Frieze. In 2021, she worked with composer Stephen Shannon and artists Aideen Barry on By Slight Ligaments (Limerick City Gallery) and Alice Maher and Rachel Fallon on The Map / We Are The Map (Rua Red). She is co-editor with Kim Gordon of This Woman’s Work: Essays on Music. Her debut novel, Hagstone, will be published in April 2024 by 4th Estate.