100 years ago, the nascent Irish Free State endured a brutal civil war that centered on the issue of the partition of the nation: on who would be “in” and “out” of a newly independent Ireland. While the war ostensibly settled the issue by upholding the Anglo-Irish treaty, the real issues of partition, inclusion, and exclusion remain raw and volatile today.
Our conference will provide a venue to explore the relationship between community and inclusion in the past, present, and future of Irish history, literature, and the field of Irish Studies in general. Participants are invited to explore the themes of “community” and “inclusion” in their widest sense, from current personal experiences with shifting perspectives on diversity and inclusion, to the role of ‘belonging’ or not in the ancient and medieval Irish past. Further, we invite discussion on inclusivity and Irish Studies within the communities of academia and Public History.
With a well-known tradition of LGBTQIA+ pride, support of women- and minority-owned businesses, and ongoing creation of inclusive spaces for neurodivergent and differently abled persons, St. Petersburg, FL is the ideal location to gather and discuss these important pathways forward in creating a more inclusive Irish Studies. The locally-owned and operated Hollander Hotel will provide a community-centered “home base” to the conference, and all conference events will take place on the beautiful water-front University of South Florida St. Petersburg campus. The vibrant downtown community of St. Petersburg will play a central role in the theme of the conference, and multiple outings to local museums and beaches will be made available to participants.
Suggested topics to explore within the theme of Community and Inclusivity
- The end of the Irish Civil War and post-war recovery and identity formation within Irish communities.
- The effects of partition and current Brexit issues on border communities in Ireland.
- Achieving balanced and inclusive education on the Northern Ireland Conflict in a post-Brexit world.
- The Irish language and its relationship with ‘belonging’ in Irish and Irish-American communities, past and present.
- Anti-Racism in Irish Studies and countering mis-appropriations of Irish history for white-supremacist narratives.
- Inclusivity as a children’s issue: education and the inclusion of children in academic spaces.
- Perspectives on pregnancy and motherhood.
- LGBTQIA+ community history and futures in Irish Studies.
- Disability Studies and Irish Studies.
- Community and Inclusivity from the perspective of Public Historians.
- Re-examining the idea of inclusivity/belonging in the various Irish canons: historical, literary, musical, cultural
While preference may be given to proposals related to the conference theme, we encourage proposals on any aspect of Irish Studies.
We welcome both individual and panel submissions (three to four participants), as well as proposals for roundtable discussions, performances, and dramatic readings. Interdisciplinary topics are encouraged. Abstracts for individual presentations should be 250-300 words in length and should include a brief (100-word) bio of the presenter. Panel proposals should not exceed 500 words and include a rationale for the panel, plus a brief description of each paper and of the participants. Proposals of 500 words for other presentations should include a rationale and mini-biographies of the participants.
Fáiltímid roimh pháipéir as Gaeilge.
Please Note: Presenters must be members of the American Conference for Irish Studies.
Should you have questions, please contact Irish Studies.
This conference will be held in person, but reasonable accommodations will be made where possible and in consultation between presenters and conference organizers.
- American Conference for Irish Studies Southern Regional Conference
- USF Irish Studies Interdisciplinary Team
- Dr. Matthew Knight
- Dr. Jennifer Dukes-Knight
- Dr. Elizabeth Ricketts-Jones
- Dr. Susan Mooney
- Jerry Rumph, J.D.