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Paul Vincent Carroll Biography

(1900–68), Things that Are Caesar's, Shadow and Substance, The White Steed, The Coggerers

play irish influence dublin

Irish dramatist, born in Blackrock, Co. Louth, educated at St Patrick's College, Dublin. He emigrated to Scotland in 1921 and taught in Glasgow until his first theatrical success in 1937. Carroll was one of a number of playwrights, including Lennox Robinson, who contributed significantly to the prevalence of Realism at the Abbey Theatre in the 1930s and 1940s. Things that Are Caesar's (1932), produced at the Abbey, is an early example of the profound influence of Ibsen on Carroll's dramas, an influence which later became a handicap; the play succeeds in universalizing an Irish tale of arranged marriage, entrapment, and the conflict between worldliness and spiritual aspiration. Carroll's first outstanding play, Shadow and Substance (1937), continues his didactic use of local settings and characters. The play achieves a balance between its portrayal of insular rural life and the grand theme of intellectual pride, as well as establishing Carroll's unique ability to characterize the Irish priest. His other plays include The White Steed and The Coggerers, both staged in 1939, and The Devil Came from Dublin (1952).

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