“In this richly documented exploration of his own public life and that of his father, Roy Johnston provides us with a unique opportunity to follow the intellectual odyssey of a singularly gifted family, from the Board Room of Trinity College Dublin in the 1930s to the smoke-filled rooms of the Republican movement in the 1960s and beyond. Johnston throws fascinating light on his father, one of the few influential, politically active Protestants in the Irish Free State, and integrates that story with his own even more singular record – as an innovative and modernizing socialist with a lifelong belief in the centrality of science to transform society for the better, and as an astute critic from within of the militant Irish Republicanism that triumphed in the 1970s.” —David Dickson, Department of History, Trinity College Dublin
“Historians of the period, economists, and anyone interested in the parties of the left, will find much to engross them. … whatever the reader’s political persuasion, it is heartening to read an account of a man following out ideas and ideals to improve society at a time when the horizon of most is bound by self-interest and immediate gain.” —Thomas J. Morrissey, S.J., Studies
This series of memoirs covers successive attempts by father and son to address the problem of building a rational, inclusive, national political superstructure on an all-Ireland basis, making use of the best of available European experience, and trying to counter the extremes of Catholic nationalism and Orange Protestant hegemonism.