The Baltimore Sun


Journalist and feminist

Nuala O'Faolain, a journalist and feminist who gained international fame with her outspoken 1996 memoir Are You Somebody?, died of lung cancer Friday at a hospice in south Dublin, Ireland, her family said.

Ms. O'Faolain, who was a University College Dublin lecturer in literature before becoming one of Ireland's best-known journalists, said in an April radio interview that the lung cancer had spread to her liver and that brain tumors had ruined her ability to concentrate.

She worked as a television producer and reporter for the British Broadcasting Corp. and RTE, and gained a national readership as an Irish Times columnist.

Ms. O'Faolain became a best-selling author in 1996 with the publication of Are You Somebody? It was initially intended to be a collection of her Irish Times columns, but evolved into an unusually intimate, even risque memoir.

In it, she recounted her tough family upbringing with a philandering father and alcoholic mother, her own descent into alcohol abuse, and a lifetime struggle to attain professional, social and sexual fulfillment.

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