''The Phoenix'' is an Irish political and current affairs magazine established in 1983. Inspired by the British magazine ''Private Eye
'' it was edited for thirty years by Paddy Prendeville. The publication is generally fortnightly, with a larger annual issue each December.
History and structure
The magazine was launched in January 1983 and is published by Penfield Enterprises Ltd. The magazine was established by John Mulcahy
[Dublin, Ireland: The Irish Times, 7 Jan 2006, p. 14, "Publisher who became monarch of the magazine sector."]
It had an ABC
of 19,014 for 2004 and 18,268 in 2007. The current editor is Paddy Prendiville, editor since about a year after the magazine was started.
The name ''Phoenix'' is a reference to its "emergence from the ashes" of two of Mulcahy's previous publications. These were the republican
political magazine ''Hibernia'', which ceased publishing in 1980 after a libel action, and the ''Sunday Tribune
'' newspaper, which first collapsed financially in 1982.
The magazine secures much of its material from "insider" sources, and promotes contact with its ''Goldhawk'' phone line.
Layout and style
Features in the magazine include a news column; detailed profiles ("Pillars of Society" and "The Young Bloods"); "Affairs of the Nation", which looks at political scandals; "Bog Cuttings" which consists of humorous and unusual events outside Dublin (often bizarre court cases), "Hush Hush" and "On the beat", which deals with security and intelligence matters; and a satirical section, "Craic and Codology". It also has an extensive financial column, "Moneybags".
Like ''Private Eye'', the cover features a photo montage with a speech bubble
, putting ironic or humorous comments into the mouths of the famous in response to topical events. Other features include an "Apology" section (where the magazine offers an ersatz apology for the failings or success of some person or event), "That Menu in Full", the use of ("That's enough of this. -Ed"
type interjections) and their derivatives, and the Christmas Gift lists, where implausible gifts with ridiculous features are offered for sale.
In contrast to ''Private Eye'', the ''Phoenix'' is printed on magazine stock rather than newsprint, and uses colour, including photography, quite extensively.
A fixture in ''The Phoenix'' magazine is a full-page parody of the Taoiseach
of the day, always located in the "Craic and Codology" section:
, whose Northside Dublin accent and frequent habit of using mixed metaphors and phrases was noted, was parodied in the ''Diary of a Nordsoide Taoiseach'' which consisted of a phonetic translation of his broad north Dublin accent.
had his personal gaffes, misfortunes and bad luck mentioned in ''Biffo's Briefs'', which were a variety of memos, letters and emails from beleaguered government ministers, his predecessor Bertie Ahern (whose letters were often demands for money or snide remarks about Cowen's handling of the government since he took office, composed often in Fagan's pub in Drumcondra
) or enquiries from foreign politicians.
stars in the ''Wesht Wing'' in his attempt to keep his Labour Party
partners and right wing Fine Gael TD
The Workers' Party of Ireland
was also a frequent target of satire and investigation in its 1980s heyday over its funding methods which resulted in John Mulcahy receiving threats from the Official IRA
[The Lost Revolution: The Story of the Official IRA and the Workers’ Party]
More recently, it has been highly critical of the Corrib gas pipeline
and supports the Shell to Sea
and Pobal Chill Chomáin
campaigns against the laying of the pipeline. It published a supplementary summary and commentary on the Goldstone Report
on the siege of Gaza and attacked the actions of the Israeli government
over the illegal use of Irish passport
s in the assassination of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh
, and the Gaza flotilla raid
. The magazine was highly critical of the 2007–2011 Fianna Fáil
coalition. It called for the 2011 Irish budget
to be defeated and pointed out that the money loaned as part of the EU stability fund would come at the cost of a crippling rate of interest
* ''Waterford Whispers News
* ''Private Eye
* ''Village'' (magazine)
* The Hibernia Magazine
References and footnotes
Category:Satirical magazines published in Ireland
Category:Political magazines published in Ireland
Category:Magazines established in 1983
Category:Magazines published in the Republic of Ireland
Category:Mass media in Dublin (city)