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Wake Forest
University Press

Wake Forest University Press

Dedicated to Irish Poetry

Wake: Up to Poetry

"The act of poetry is a rebel act."

Paula Meehan: Rebel with a Cause

Paula Meehan, born in Dublin in 1955, spent much of her childhood in England before finishing her primary school education at Dublin’s Central Model Girls’ School in Gardiner Street.  She began her secondary school education at St. Michael’s Holy Faith Covent in Finglas, but her time there was short lived.  Meehan was expelled from the school for leading a protest march against the school’s regime.  Following her expulsion, she studied independently to earn her Intermediate Certificate, before receiving her Bachelor of Arts degree from Trinity College, Dublin and a Master of Fine Arts in Poetry from Eastern Washington University.  During her college years, Meehan maintained a spirit of anti-conformity, taking time off from school to travel and participate in street theater.  Nowadays, Meehan has become a strong supporter of prisoners’ rights and spends much of her time teaching poetry in prisons, in addition to teaching in university and community settings.  Meehan has lead writing workshops in many prisons and is a patron of the Irish Penal Reform Trust (IPRT). 


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