Owen Parry


I am doing a thesis about owen parry and am remarking on his playful use of racism. Any ideas?

>>By Catherine   (Friday, 14 Mar 2003 01:08)

I've been reading Faded Coat of Blue, which is the only book of his that I've read so far. The use of ethnic and racial slurs in his dialogue is in keeping with the times he is writing about.

>>By TerryW   (Friday, 31 Oct 2003 17:43)

Currently half way through "Bold Sons of Erin." Dreading being done and then having to wait for the next Abel Jones novel.
For playful racism, you have to look at his stereotyping Northern Europeans, including Abel Jones' Welshness. I do not have a developed ear for Welsh speaking or for any cultural idiosyncrasies, but you have to love how intertwined the personal traits of Jones are with his definition of his own "race." I would also say that the way the cultural clashes occur in every book, that the USA melting pot is far from done in mixing all these cultures together. The Irish, in particular, seem to vex Major Jones. He respects them on the battlefield but decrys their Popery, superstitions, and drinking habits. His beloved landlady in Washington is a German Valkyrie who cooks. You learn in Sons of Erin that she has even killed.
Even though he professes to hate the Irish, his "eye witness" account of Ireland in the potato famine is frightening and ultimately much more damning than any cultural biases Major Jones has.
A complex man is Major Jones.

>>By onthegoodfoot   (Monday, 29 Dec 2003 01:10)

Wanted to add, the group Major Jones is angry at when he goes to Ireland is the British upper and middle class and the terrible way Ireland is treated. Not the Irish. Sorry I did not make that clear.

>>By onthegoodfoot   (Monday, 29 Dec 2003 01:12)

I have just recently dicovered Owen Parry. I've only read, "Bold Sons of Erin" and "Faded Coat of Blue" in that order. While he does tend to stereotype the different ethnic groups that he writes about, he doesn't do it in a mean spirited way. He will almost always balance his comments with a complimentary statement of either the "race" or the individual. With the exception of the great bullies of the age, the British. Note the dedication in "Faded Coat of Blue". 'To the Welsh, Scots and Irish who built America while the English weren't looking'. Mr Parry uses the tone of the time with no bigotry intended himself.

My great-grandmother, who was born in 1889 and lived until 1975, held a grudge against the British her entire life. Even refusing to by anything made in England. Such was the prejudace this decendant of Welsh and Scotch-Irish held against the Empire. I didn't hold these prejudaces myself until my reading of the likes of Leon Uris', "Exodus" and "Trinity" led me to research for myself the duplicity of the British.

There you have by first comment, now my first question. I've been trying to find the book refered to at the end of "Faded Coat of Blue", "The Vacant Chair" by Owen Parry. I can't find it anywhere. Can anyone help me?

>>By WV Reader   (Sunday, 11 Jan 2004 15:42)

I just finished "bold Sons of Erin" - it appears to me that the racism used in Mr. Parry's novels is based on the many attitudes of the historical times. Many Northerners were not interested in freeing slaves, the Irish were treated brutally, (as well as the Native Americans, other immigrant groups) and groups of white Anglo-Saxon protestants formed such parties as the "Know-Nothings". Mr. Parry seems to be an excellent historical novelist and I'm fast becoming a fan - Abel Jones seems to be a great investigator! Good Luck with your thesis.

>>By LarryD   (Friday, 23 Jul 2004 04:27)

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