ABOUT THIS BOOK
In the late 1890s, John Synge, in his middle twenties and unsure of his vocation, made his way to Paris to study French literature and become a literary critic. There he met William Butler Yeats. The eminent poet advised Synge to drop his involvement with fin de siècle French authors, return to Ireland, and describe a society with which he had a natural connection.
Synge first traveled to the primitive, little-known Aran Islands in 1898. His trip proved to be a wonderfully fruitful and decisive experience. He then went back for part of each summer until 1902. The Aran Islands, his memoir of those experiences, was published in 1907, and the future playwright called it his "first serious piece of work."