Fintan O ‘Toole


Fintan O’Toole is a columnist with The Irish Times and Leonard L. Milberg visiting Professor of Irish Letters at Princeton University. He is the winner of both the Orwell Prize and the European Press Prize for his work on Brexit. He is currently working on the official biography of Seamus Heaney.Born in Dublin in 1958, he has been drama critic of In Dublin magazine, The Sunday Tribune, the New York Daily News, and The Irish Times and Literary Adviser to the Abbey Theatre. He edited Magill magazine and since 1988, has been a columnist with the Irish Times. He contributes regularly to the New York Review of Books and The Guardian. His most recent book, We Don’t Know Ourselves: A Personal History of Ireland Since 1958 was named Book of the Year in the recent An Post Irish Book Awards.

In 2018, he published the bestselling Heroic Failure: Brexit and The Politics of Pain (published in the US as The Politics of Pain).  Among his many other books are Judging Shaw (2017), A History of Ireland in 100 Objects (2013), Ship of Fools (2009), White Savage: William Johnson and the Invention of America (2005), After the Ball (2003), Shakespeare is Hard but so is Life (2002); A Traitor’s Kiss: The Life of Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1997) and The Politics of Magic: The Work and Times of Tom Murphy (1987).