Christy Brown Memorial Site

The legacy of the Irish Novelist & Poet Christy Brown

Dear visitor, please find below a complete listing of all the literary work of Christy Brown. Please click on any of the titles and they will carry you to the appropriate Amazon pages where you can purchase the books.

Unfortunately a lot of his work is now out of print for which reason it appears even more important to preserve and spread the remaining pieces of literature he created.

  • 1954 My Left Foot Christy Brown was born in Dublin in 1932 with cerebral palsy. Behind the helpless child, who many people wrote off, was an articulate, imaginative writer. His mother always believed in him and helped him to learn to communicate against the odds. This is his autobiography.
  • This is the true story of Christy Brown (Daniel Day-Lewis), who was born with cerebral palsy (CP) into a poor Irish family in 1932 and overcame severe physical disability to become a famous artist and writer. In his early years Christy is severely disabled and disfigured--spastic, unable to speak, and close to quadriplegic, able to control only his left foot. His father (Ray McAnally) initially regards him as both retarded and sinful, but his mother (Brenda Fricker) faithfully and heroically cares for him.
  • Gradually, as he begins to speak, Christy's intelligence becomes apparent, his father accepts him into the family, and he trains himself to paint with his left foot. In his Dublin neighborhood, Christy is widely accepted, playing football goalie (by lying across the goal) and being made King of the Bonfire on All Hallows Eve, and he at least passively participates in an adolescent game of spin-the-bottle.
  • CP specialist Dr. Eileen Cole (Fiona Shaw) recognizes Christy's artistic talent and offers to train him. She brings him Shakespeare's "To be or not to be" soliloquy, gives him training in speech and movement control, and arranges for a one-man show of his artistic work. Christy falls in love with Dr. Cole and is crushed when she reveals that she is already engaged, and he tries unsuccessfully to slit his wrists.
  • Recovering emotionally from that disappointment, Christy in the years that follow sees more success as an artist and writes the autobiography on which this film is based--and, we are told in a closing title, he marries his nurse when he is about 40. (Christy Brown died in 1981 in his late forties.)

  • 1970 Down All The Days Written 13 years after his first autobiography, My Left Foot, this is an autobiographical novel, set in Dublin during the '40s and '50s.
  • and feelings of his sprawling family, he is the focal figure of the novel which relates his searing childhood and coming of age. At once tormented and relaxed, he is the detached observer of life i the slums of forties and fifties Dublin.
  • Written in the fearless discipline that Christy Brown had to establish over his own body, Down all the Days displays his lyrical gift with language to the full.

  • 1974 A Shadow on Summer Riley McCombe, a crippled Irish novelist, is on his first visit to the United States, guest of his British publisher's old friends, Laurie and Don Emerson. He is there to celebrate the American publication of his first novel, but more important, to complete in the peace and quiet of a small Connecticut seaside town, his second book. For that task, Laurie becomes his guide and mentor. This peace is disturbed by the young freelance photographer, Abbie Lang, hired by Riley's American publishers to take photographs at their celebration party. To Riley she is something sxciting and exotic; and Abbie falls in love. She takes him on a sight-seeing tour of New York, marvelously described, and then to her Greenwich Village studio where fruitlessly they spend the night together. For in the developing drama that emerges it becomes clear that though Abbie and Laurie both, in the their different ways, love him, Riley is incapable of response. He is a prisoner of his own ego, a man struggling at all costs for self-fulfillment through his writing, torture though his struggle may be. So he casts a shadow on the lives of both these mutually antagonistic women during the long New England summer. At the end, his book is finished, but will he ever write another? Abbie has been cast aside, but in a finely written chapter Laurie endeavors to give him hope. There may yet be a summer without shadows. In the end it must be up to him.

  • 1976 Wild Grow the Lilies Irish journalist Luke Sheridan, newly jilted, sets out to cover the story of a poisoning gone awry and ends up in a boisterous party tht moves at the pace of the Keystone Kops set loose in a fun house. From Madame Lala's house of pleasure, with her most alluring "girl" Babysoft, and Count Fustenhalter, the designated murder victim, through gallons of drink and hours of orgy, we are exposed to a multi-bedroom farce of the good, old-fashioned, earthy, laugh-out-loud kind.

Books about Christy (Biographies)

Christy Browns Women by Anthony J. Jordan An insightful and captivating account of Christy Browns relationships, friendships and the nurturing, inspiring as well as influential roles of the women in his life. A Biography Drawing on his letters, incorporating the Founding of Cerebral Palsy Ireland by Robert Collis

Christy Brown, The life that inspired My Left Foot by Georgina Hambleton