ACIS Logo ACIS Mid-Atlantic Regional 2018

Villanova University’s Center for Irish Studies will host the 2018 Mid-Atlantic American Conference for Irish Studies on November 8-10, 2018 at Villanova University, outside Philadelphia. Paper and panel proposals are welcome on areas spanning the field, and attention to the conference theme is preferable.

The field of Irish Studies has been described as interdisciplinary, transdisciplinary, and multidisciplinary. This conference explores how Irish Studies, like many area studies, is lodged between larger disciplines, ideologies, and methodologies. Betweenness differs from liminality—often seen as fluid, transitional, or temporary—and suggests a longstanding relationship to others. If states of betweenness differ from hybrid states that suggest something new born of divergent sources, it may be that betweens are formed by external pressures, and are recognized only secondarily.

For four decades, Irish Studies conferences have featured overlapping studies, as different disciplines have informed one another, challenging methodologies, boundaries, and theories. Irish Studies, like Ireland’s geography, also occupies in-between spaces, between continents, cultures, disciplines, and professions. Northern Irish leaders regularly negotiate between the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. Irish ministers negotiate between North America and Europe.

This conference will consider the varied meanings, approaches and uses of betweens to probe the possibilities and limits in critical and scholarly inquiry. We welcome papers that consider aspects of Irish Studies from the perspectives of being or thinking between. Studies that forge new methodologies that go between disciplines, opening new spaces of inquiry, are particularly welcome. Papers might also explore how “being between” is advantageous or disadvantageous, something desirable or something in need of resolution.

Conference highlights:

Philadelphia’s Inis Nua Theatre Company will perform Charolais by Noni Stapleton, acted by Corinna Burns on Thursday, November 8, 2018.

Irish philosopher William Desmond will “Poetic Porosity and Astonished Prayer: The Intimate Metaxu and the Poetics of Seán Ó Ríordáin” in his keynote lecture.

Kathryn Kirkpatrick, scholar and poet, will deliver a lecture: “Betwixt and Between: Liminal Lagomorphs in Contemporary Irish Poetry” for her keynote address.

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