Small Histories: a Seminar/Study Day on Irish Visual and Material Culture, 1870-1921.
14 December 2012, National Library of Ireland, 9.45am-5.15pm.
Ireland is now immersed in what has been termed “the decade of commemoration” which revisits a momentous period (1912-1922) in the country’s national history. Already we see the tendency, within historical commentary and historical analysis, to focus on “big history”, that is to say, the well-known histories that address political events and their national and social effects.
Parallel to the “big history” lies the “small history”: the history of everyday life, the private, the personal, the commonplace, the mass experience. Taking this as a starting point, the Small Histories will explore how researchers are and may write about the materiality of the popular experience focusing the period spanning 1870 up to and including 1921. Small Histories will profile new scholarship by emergent and established scholars that uses visual and material culture to construct and reconstruct historical narratives that run parallel to the well-known “big” histories. These short (10 minute) presentations will examine how visual and material culture methodologies often offer a sideways glimpse of cultural history that feeds such exploration and how small histories can often challenge the hegemony of a given history.
In addition to our speakers Prof. David Crowley (Royal College of Art) will speak on the 50-year commemoration of the October Revolution (1917) and the material and popular expression of this event. This will be followed by a panel discussion to explore the themes that emerge from the presentations.
The event is free and seats will be allocated on a first come basis.
9.45 Welcome: Fiona Ross, Director, National Library of Ireland.
Introduction: Dr. Elaine Sisson (IADT), Dr. Anna Moran (NCAD) and Dr. Linda King (IADT): Small Histories: Visual and Material Culture and Popular Experience, 1870-1921
Morning Session 1:
10.05 Teresa Breathnach (NCAD): Liner-Type: Ships’ Printers and Printing
10.20 Orla Fitzpatrick (UU): Seaside snapshots and vernacular Irish photography
10.35 Sara Daley: Germ Theory’s Impact on Leisure Travel in the 1870s
10.50 David Toms (UCC): Dick Fitzgerald’s ‘How to Play Gaelic Football’: sport, and nationalism in Ireland on the eve of World War I
11.05 Ann Wilson (CIT): Christina Jessop's Picture-Postcard Album, 1902-1908
Morning Session 2:
11.50 Wendy Williams (NCAD): ‘If you are an Irish man...’: Irish recruiting posters 1914–18
12.05 James Curry (NUIG) The Irish Worker Newspaper: Jim Larkin’s oratory congealed in print
12.20 Alex Ward (National Museum of Ireland): Dress and National Identity:Celtic Revival Clothing in the early 20th century
12.35 Maeve O’Riordan (UCC) The Small History of ‘The Big Day’: material culture of gentry and aristocratic weddings in Ireland, 1870-1921
12.50 Clodagh Tait (Mary Immaculate/University of Essex): Landscapes of Loss: mourning and memory in an east Cork parish
2.20 Keynote: Professor David Crowley (Royal College of Art, London): Spectres of October
4.00 Panel Discussion (including Q&A for presenters)
Catriona Crowe: Head of Special Projects, National Archives; Brian Crowley: Curator, Pearse Museum;
Liam Doona: Head of Design and Visual Arts, IADT; Luke Gibbons: Professor of Irish Literary and Cultural Studies, NUI Maynooth; Niamh O’Sullivan: Professor Emeritus, Visual Culture, NCAD.
Convened by: Dr. Elaine Sisson (IADT, Elaine.Sisson@iadt.ie), Dr. Anna Moran (NCAD, firstname.lastname@example.org) and Dr. Linda King (IADT, Linda.King@iadt.ie).
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