Ireland and Masculinities in the Longue Durée (NUI Galway, 19-20 August, 2013)

full name / name of organization: 
Rebecca Barr (NUI Galway), Sean Brady (Birkbeck, London), Jane McGaughey (Concordia)


In recent years, scholars of culture and literature have begun to elaborate on masculinities in the contemporary Irish context. While providing an invaluable starting point for discussion of Irish masculinities, these studies have tended to focus on the postmodern, with highly theoretical emphases in the findings. 

Moreover, normative and hegemonic masculinities remain largely unquestioned, and historical contexts and continuities are often ignored or neglected.

This groundbreaking symposium will attempt to bring the history of Irish masculinities into focus. We aim to bring together for the first time scholars working in history, literature, culture, and sociology, in Medieval, Early Modern, Modern and Contemporary time period specialisms in the fields of gender and masculinities. The symposium will explore connections, continuities, changes and dissonances in masculinities in relation to Ireland, and will explore these themes diachronically. To this end, contributors need to be willing to present and discuss their research in thematically orientated panels that discuss their subject across time periods. This will move discussion of masculinities beyond the synchronic emphases upon 'crisis' and the presentist perspective, and foster scholarship that is genuinely interdisciplinary.

We welcome papers in the following fields of enquiry - and are open to suggestion for others: politics, class, social order; religion and conflict; families; fatherhood; the diaspora (from *any* angle); popular imagery; labour and employment issues; Irishmen as "the other"; spaces as areas of negotiated gendered identities; mythology and folklore; language and traditions; manliness and alcohol; war and violence; iconography; masculinities in relation to the nationalist/revisionist binary; masculinities and sexualities.

It is intended to publish the findings of this symposium with the academic series, Genders and Sexualities in History, Palgrave Macmillan.

The series has global distribution, and fosters scholarship and scholarly enterprise that examines genders and sexualities in the Longue Durée. We therefore would welcome contributors to the symposium who also have the serious intent to contribute to this publication. Please send an abstract of no more than 250 words to Dr. Rebecca Barr (, Dr. Sean Brady, (, and Dr. Jane McGaughey, (

The deadline for abstracts is January 4, 2013.