Self-Motivation
David Goggins
Former Navy Seal
Career Development
Bryan Cranston
Actor
Critical Thinking
Liv Boeree
International Poker Champion
Emotional Intelligence
Amaryllis Fox
Former CIA Clandestine Operative
Management
Chris Hadfield
Retired Canadian Astronaut & Author
Learn
from the world's big
thinkers
Start Learning

Why did you leave Ireland?

Question: Why did you leave Ireland?

Paul Muldoon: There were a number of things that happened, a number of components and I may not even quite understand to this day why I left.

But certainly it was only afterwards that I realized there must be some connection between my father’s death in 1985 and my leaving there in 1986, which just hadn’t struck me at the time. But part of the reason I was holding on was on some level to be near him.

There was also fact that I met and fell in love with a woman; we lived in Belfast for a while, but it was necessarily her favorite spot.

There was also the fact that, my job, much as I loved it, really was, it was coming to the point where it was extremely demanding, particularly working in television and, waking up in the middle of the night wondering if it was going to rain the next day, for example--the kind of concern that the television folk have. But I realized that I probably would not be able to write to the extent that I would like, even though poetry was the thing that was most of interest to me, and even though actually I spend very little time writing poetry, and never have spent much time writing poetry, physically, in terms of the number of hours in the year. Even so, I felt some other was time to move, time to go on. 

Also, I was asked pretty much coincidentally if I’d like to come over here and do some teaching, over here to the US that’s to say. So there were a number of things coming together, and it’s--I still feel very close to the place, very close to it; and go back there all the time.

It now is extraordinarily easy to hop in the plane in Newark in the evening and five or six hours later, depending on the winds, one’s in Belfast. There’s a direct flight to Belfast from New York and that makes one’s sense of one’s place very different I think.

Not so long ago when my cousins, my uncles or my neighbors were coming over to the US, and this in the 20th century, and, of course, in the earlier centuries, the chances of their ever being able to afford to come back were slender. The length of time it took to come back was large, so it was a much different proposition, so for the moment anyhow--of course, who knows when oil runs how it’s going to be--but for the moment it’s comparatively easy to get back and forth.

I lived there until I was 35 and left so I have been here for more than 20 years. So much of it comes with one. It’s ingrained in me that I know, even now, I know the country very, very well. My sense of it is very good in terms of what that road looks like between wherever and wherever in which ever county of Ireland. Though it’s changed a lot too, much of it has remained the same.

 

Recorded on: Jan 30, 2008

Love and death kept Muldoon in Ireland, and prompted him to leave.

The “new normal” paradox: What COVID-19 has revealed about higher education

Higher education faces challenges that are unlike any other industry. What path will ASU, and universities like ASU, take in a post-COVID world?

Photo: Luis Robayo/AFP via Getty Images
Sponsored by Charles Koch Foundation
  • Everywhere you turn, the idea that coronavirus has brought on a "new normal" is present and true. But for higher education, COVID-19 exposes a long list of pernicious old problems more than it presents new problems.
  • It was widely known, yet ignored, that digital instruction must be embraced. When combined with traditional, in-person teaching, it can enhance student learning outcomes at scale.
  • COVID-19 has forced institutions to understand that far too many higher education outcomes are determined by a student's family income, and in the context of COVID-19 this means that lower-income students, first-generation students and students of color will be disproportionately afflicted.
Keep reading Show less

Why is everyone so selfish? Science explains

The coronavirus pandemic has brought out the perception of selfishness among many.

Credit: Adobe Stock, Olivier Le Moal.
Personal Growth
  • Selfish behavior has been analyzed by philosophers and psychologists for centuries.
  • New research shows people may be wired for altruistic behavior and get more benefits from it.
  • Crisis times tend to increase self-centered acts.
Keep reading Show less

How Hemingway felt about fatherhood

Parenting could be a distraction from what mattered most to him: his writing.

Ernest Hemingway Holding His Son 1927 (Wikimedia Commons)
Culture & Religion

Ernest Hemingway was affectionately called “Papa," but what kind of dad was he?

Keep reading Show less

How DNA revealed the woolly mammoth's fate – and what it teaches us today

Scientists uncovered the secrets of what drove some of the world's last remaining woolly mammoths to extinction.

Ethan Miller/Getty Images
Surprising Science

Every summer, children on the Alaskan island of St Paul cool down in Lake Hill, a crater lake in an extinct volcano – unaware of the mysteries that lie beneath.

Keep reading Show less

The biology of aliens: How much do we know?

Hollywood has created an idea of aliens that doesn't match the science.

Videos
  • Ask someone what they think aliens look like and you'll probably get a description heavily informed by films and pop culture. The existence of life beyond our planet has yet to be confirmed, but there are clues as to the biology of extraterrestrials in science.
  • "Don't give them claws," says biologist E.O. Wilson. "Claws are for carnivores and you've got to be an omnivore to be an E.T. There just isn't enough energy available in the next trophic level down to maintain big populations and stable populations that can evolve civilization."
  • In this compilation, Wilson, theoretical physicist Michio Kaku, Bill Nye, and evolutionary biologist Jonathan B. Losos explain why aliens don't look like us and why Hollywood depictions are mostly inaccurate.
Keep reading Show less
Quantcast