Irish author Clare O'Dea examines ten of the most prevalent stereotypes surrounding the Irish in her new book "The Naked Irish"

Welcome to our March pick for the IrishCentral Monthly Book Club! Each month we will pick a new Irish book or a great book by an Irish author and celebrate the amazing ability of the Irish to tell a good story. Throughout March, we'll be reading “The Naked Irish: Portrait of a Nation Beyond the Cliches” by Irish author Clare O'Dea.

As the world gears up for St. Patrick’s Day - with or without parades - there’s no better time to examine the stereotypes that sometimes plague the Irish.

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In her new book, “The Naked Irish: Portrait of a Nation Beyond the Cliches,” author Clare O’Dea sets out to examine the most prevalent stereotypes surrounding Ireland, “many of which are no longer fit for purpose.”

O'Dea is a native of Dublin where she worked in the media landscape before emigrating to Switzerland sixteen years ago. There, she worked at the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation and released her first book "The Naked Swiss" in 2018. 

In 2016, her short fiction story The Favour was published in The Irish Times and nominated for the 2017 Hennessy New Irish Writing awards. The Irish author is a regular contributor to Sunday Miscellany on RTE Radio 1. 

Very excited to share the cover of my new book, The Naked Irish: Portrait of a Nation Beyond the Clichés, out on Sep...

Publiée par Clare O'Dea sur Lundi 2 septembre 2019

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Of her new book, O'Dea says: “A lot of clichés have crystallized about the Irish, many benign and patronizing but some more negative. All of them cry out to be challenged. As always, the real story is much more complex and more interesting than the simplified messages fed to tourists and investors.

“Are the Irish a nation of emigrants if we have the second-highest foreign-born population in Europe? Are we Catholic if attendance at Mass is as low as two percent in some parishes? Do we really hate the English and want a united Ireland? Is the oppression of women in our DNA? Are the Irish really friendly or just faking it? And should we be proud of the Irish economy?

“Every generation thinks they are the generation of change. And it’s true. I feel the particular change I’ve witnessed in my lifetime has been a process of freeing Irish minds. But, while we enjoy our new-found freedom, it is so important not to forget where we have come from."

O’Dea says her new book “is a broad canvas, drawing on culture, history, politics, and economics, as well as personal reportage and memoir, to interpret that change.”

"The Naked Irish" is available directly from Mentor Books, for international delivery from and You can keep up-to-date with author Clare O'Dea on her Facebook and Twitter.

Read an extract from The Naked Irish about emigration, one of ten topics covered in the book

— Clare O'Dea (@ClareODeaZ) September 25, 2019

Read More: The Ultimate Irish Reading List with IrishCentral’s Book Club

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