MMLA 2017 Permanent Section: Irish Studies
2017 Midwest Modern Language Association Conference
“Artists and Activists”
November 9-12, 2017
Permanent Section Call for Papers: Irish Studies
The Statutes of Kilkenny (1366), which attempted to prevent English colonists living in Ireland from adopting Gaelic speech, dress culture and mandated that the Irish conform to English laws and customs is just one reminder that the age-old role of the artist in Irish society has always been inextricably linked to questions about the relationship between writing, nation, and power. Much later, as a new nationalist and cultural revival emerged in the nineteenth century, writers and artists of the Irish Literary Renaissance turned to the myths and legends of the Gaelic past to ballast the rising nationalist movement as much as resist attempts to legislate English cultural intervention in Ireland, all the while proving that the artistic, cultural, and economic histories of Ireland are deeply intertwined with its rich and complex tradition of writing in Irish and English. From the First World War and the Easter Rising of 1916 through the Troubles and beyond canonical and non-canonical artists alike fashioned key social, political, and aesthetic contexts which have shaped modern Irish society and culture. More recently, whereas the “Celtic Tiger” brought about economic and cultural rejuvenation tied to increasingly globalized flows of capital and culture, the post-2008 financial crash jolted the nation into recession, producing in turn new artistic voices and agendas.
In response to the MMLA 2017 conference theme, “Artists and Activists,” this Permanent Section devoted to Irish Studies seeks presentations that examine the theme of “artists and activists” in Irish society—whether voicing support or opposition to social change and/or advocating against the notion of artistic involvement in social movements. This panel welcomes proposals on all aspects Irish Studies, from the arts, cinema, theatre, culture, history, language, literature, and politics of Ireland and its diaspora. Emerging and/or established academic scholars working in the humanities or cultural media as well as educators, artists, and activists are encouraged to apply.
Please submit a 250-word abstract and presentation title along with your full name, institutional affiliation (if applicable), and contact details to session chair Dr. Desmond Harding (firstname.lastname@example.org) by April 15, 2017.