David is entering the third year of his PhD at University College Dublin, having earned a BA (English and History) and MA (American Literature) from the same institution. His research focuses on twenty-first century American fiction, namely that of Cormac McCarthy, Denis Johnson, Hugh Nissenson and Rebecca Goldstein. His thesis considers aspects of shifting moral bases and ethical dilemmas as they appear in post 9/11 writing and pertain to the conflicting justifications of religious identities/traditions and scientific/secular understandings of morality. David is treasurer and a committee member of the UCD English Graduate Society, co-editor of the Emerging Perspectives Postgraduate Journal and co-organiser of the associated Emerging Perspectives Postgraduate Conference, held annually at University College Dublin. He has published an article on the poetry of Amiri Baraka and Yusef Komunyakaa, and is the author of a chapter in a forthcoming collection on the work of Paul Auster.

Book Review: Atheists in America, edited by Melanie E. Brewster

Brewster’s collection is filled with sorrowful disclosures of inequality, existential torment legitimated by biblical rhetoric and background, and ultimately a sense of overcoming from its eclectic grouping of contributors. The common thread of endurance binds the experiences of these ‘Atheists in America’. This collection informs the reader of the stigma and deep-rooted suspicion which exists in many parts of the United States, often those one would expect to be receptive of minority identities. It is a timely reminder of the value, virtues and antecedents of rational thinking and the humanistic endeavour which can arise from it. Continue reading