Campus Location

Abilene Campus (Residential)

Date of Award

Spring 5-2018

Document Type




Degree Name

Master of Arts

Committee Chair or Primary Advisor

Steve Weathers

Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor

Bill Carroll

Third Committee Member or Committee Reader

Kelly Elliott


Sebastian Barry is most notable for using his ancestors as the main characters in his novel. He takes small wisps of their life and tells a hauntingly, beautiful story. In The Whereabouts of Eneas McNulty, On Canaan’s Side, and The Secret Scripture, he explores the themes of exile and the importance and difficulty of home. The problem with home for all of these characters is the fact that none of them can fully return. In the first chapter, I focus on Eneas’ thought of home, which is the physical land of Ireland. The next chapter is Lilly whose home is the community that surrounds her, but she latches onto these people as her only survival, her only chance to succeed in life. The last chapter, Roseanne, explores how she deals with only having the home of her embodied memories. Living in an insane asylum she has a different experience than the other two characters, since she is the only one who physically stays in Ireland. However, all three never succeed in returning home and are left with a disillusioned idea of Ireland.



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