Life on the fringe? Ireland and Europe between 1800 and 1922
Queen’s University Belfast, 3-4 April 2009
Up until the early 1990s Ireland remained on the fringe of Europe in psychological as well as geographical terms, often perceived as little more than ‘the other island’ in the Atlantic Archipelago. Since then, however, EU initiatives like the Erasmus and Socrates exchange programmes and the elimination of work barriers have caused a spectacular increase in intra-European mobility and have brought European countries closer than ever. ‘The other island’ has finally come into its own as one of Europe’s most popular destinations for workers and tourists alike. The world of Irish historiography is no exception to this trend. Many European scholars have begun to engage with Irish history, bringing in their own social, intellectual and cultural backgrounds to provide fresh and illuminating insights. Unfortunately, intra-European networks are difficult to establish in the world of academic research; language barriers, physical difficulties of access to foreign archives, and high levels of specialisation, tend to enclose national histories within their own self-contained cocoons. Still, even such emblematic themes in Irish historical discourse as religious conflict, nationalism, republicanism, revolution, emigration and exile, diasporas and the reinvention of national culture, are by no means exclusive to the Irish context. By the mid-nineteenth century, long before the foundation of the European Union, a rich network of social, economic and cultural links had already been established among European countries, and phenomena like Daniel O’Connell’s liberal Catholicism, the Young Ireland insurrection of 1848, the successive emigration waves and the cultural revival of the late nineteenth century cannot be understood without the influence of contemporary European events.
In order to help bring Irish studies out of their national-history shell, and at the same time strengthen the links between European postgraduate students and scholars, the proposed conference aims at re-evaluating nineteenth-century Irish history by placing it in its European context, while bringing all participants together into an online research network.
We welcome papers from a wide range of disciplines, from social to political, economic and cultural history. Possible paper topics include: social and economic patterns, ethnic and/or religious conflict, nationalism and other ideologies, emigration and exile, and the history of science and technology. However, this list is by no means exhaustive, and all papers covering aspects of Irish history within a European framework will be considered.
Papers should not exceed 1,500-2,000 words in length (20 minutes’ delivery). A 250-word abstract, along with a short author profile, should be submitted by 22 December 2008 to firstname.lastname@example.org
The working language of the conference will be English.
For comments and further enquiries, please contact the organisers at the above address.
Pierre Ranger (Queen’s University Belfast)
Zsuzsanna Zarka (NUI Maynooth)
Brian Heffernan (NUI Maynooth)
Marta Ramón, PhD (NUI Maynooth)
Pierre Ranger, PhD student(Queen’s Univ. Belfast)
Zsuzsanna Zarka, PhD student (NUI Maynooth)
Brian Heffernan, PhD student (NUI Maynooth)
Dr Marta Ramón (NUI Maynooth)
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