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The Quiet Man and the End of the World

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Friday, May 20, 2011

Irish actor Gabriel Byrne discusses Irish film, his acting career, and his role as Ireland's cultural ambassador. Plus, our latest Please Explain takes a look at the end of the world predictions—where they come from and why they persist.

Gabriel Byrne, Ireland’s Cultural Ambassador

Renowned Irish actor Gabriel Byrne, Ireland’s cultural ambassador, discusses organizing the exhibition “Revisiting the Quiet Man: Ireland on Film” at MoMA, which explores representations of Irish identity in cinema. Byrne chose films with key themes—an emigré’s sense of “home,” politics, the role of women, religion, and Irish identity, including “The Quiet Man,” “The Dead,” “The Informer,” “The Wind That Shakes the Barley,” “In the Name of the Father,” and “Hunger.” Byrne will also discuss the Imagine Ireland program in New York City, and his cultural ambassadorship.

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Please Explain: Apocalypse Predictions

You may have noticed billboards and people handing out pamphlets in the subways claiming that the world will on May 21. Well, since that’s tomorrow, for today’s Please Explain we thought we’d investigate the long history of doomsday predictions. We’re joined by Jesus Rodriguez-Velasco, Professor in the Department of Latin American and Iberian Cultures at Columbia University, who teaches a class called “The End of the World.” John R. Hall, professor of sociology at the University of California Davis, and author of Apocalypse: From Antiquity to the Empire of Modernity. And Doug Weaver, Associate Professor of Religion at Baylor University.

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Guest Picks: Gabriel Byrne

Read to find out what Gabriel Byrne is secretly a fan of.

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