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Philosophical Perspectives on Contemporary Ireland

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Humanitites Institute

University College Dublin

Belfield

Dublin 4 Dublin

Ireland

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In the fields of culture, history, politics, economics and law, issues pertaining to contemporary Ireland have inspired, and continue to inspire, scholarly interest and debate. This is particularly evident in the development and establishment of Irish Studies as an interdisciplinary research area that nonetheless remains overwhelmingly informed by history and literary theory. While acknowledging the important existing work on Ireland, Irish identity, and Ireland’s people from a historical and literary perspective, we question why there is such surprisingly little philosophical analysis of contemporary Ireland. Have social, economic, or political issues arising in an Irish context simply not interested philosophers? Has the field of Irish Studies formed through the exclusion of philosophical work? Does the discipline of philosophy not easily lend itself to the study of contemporary Ireland? Have institutional structures and disciplinary pressures dissuaded philosophers from pursuing questions on Ireland? On the other hand, might philosophy bring a different lens or body of thought to theorising Ireland that has, perhaps, thus far been largely overlooked? What, if anything, is unique about philosophical work on Ireland? What might this, in turn, contribute to the interdisciplinary study of Ireland? What can it add to scholarship on the contemporary Irish context? We seek answers to these questions by bringing together scholars interested in advancing specifically philosophical readings of contemporary Ireland. Given the lacuna of philosophical work on Ireland, we thus follow recent calls in other disciplines, including sociology, to broaden the scope of Irish Studies by developing philosophical work on Ireland that moves beyond the literary and historical paradigm. Moreover, we seek connections between the rare, but all the more exemplary existing philosophical work on Ireland, and the future possibility of a larger body of thought arising from a mutual engagement of philosophy and Irish Studies.

In light of the pressing nature of contemporary issues in Ireland, we invite conference delegates to explore with us the theme of 'Philosophical Perspsectives on Contemporary Ireland' over the course of two days at the Humanities Institute, University College Dublin.

Conference organisers:

Dr. Áine Mahon (UCD School of Education)

Dr. Clara Fischer (UCD School of Social Policy, Social Work, and Social Justice)


Programme:


8th March :

9.30-9.40 Welcome and Opening Remarks

9:45-11:00 Keynote Address 1: Prof. Emerita Kathleen Lennon (University of Hull)

11:00-11:30 Coffee

11:30-13:00 Philosophy and National Identity
Shane Ryan (Nazarbayev University): “Irish Nationalism”
Adam Fusco (University of York): “Republicanism and the Nation: The Case of Ireland North and South”
Paul O’Grady (Trinity College Dublin): “Contingency, Irony and the Sodality: Philosophical Diversity in Ireland”

13:00-14:00 Lunch (at own expense)

14:00-15:30 Ireland, Diaspora, and Territory
Eóin Ó Cuinneagáin (University of Amsterdam): “Decolonizing Irish Diasporic Politics: On the Coloniality of Knowledge and the Project of White Epistemology in Ireland”
Sean O'Dubhghaill (KU Leuven): “Difference and diaspora: An anthropological/philosophical investigation into the Irish in 21st century Europe”
Paul Gilbert (University of Hull): “Residence, Identity and the 'common name of Irishman' today”

15:30-16:00 Coffee

16:00-17:30 Politics and Public Policy I
Vittorio Bufacchi (University College Cork): “A long History of Lame Springs: The Struggle of Socialism in Ireland”
Paul Giladi and Katherine O’Donnell (University College Dublin): “Challenges from Queer and Feminist Theory to Contemporary Ireland’s Liberal View of Marriage”
Sævar Finnbogason (University of Iceland) and Paul McLaughlin (Bath Spa University): “'One Letter and Six Months': Philosophical Reflections on Contemporary Ireland and Iceland”

17:45-19:00 Keynotes Address 2: Prof. Richard Kearney (Boston College)


20:00 Conference Dinner, Dunne & Crescenzi’s, South Frederick Street



9th March:

9:30-11:00 Ireland and the Politics of Shame
Clara Fischer (University College Dublin): Reproduction and Ireland’s Politics of Shame
Sinead Ring (University of Kent) and Mairead Enright (University of Birmingham): “Shame and the State: Transitional Justice, Epistemic Authority and How We Remember Historical Violence Against Women and Children”
Dianna Taylor (John Carroll University): “Masculinity North and South: The politics of humiliation”

11:00-11:30 Coffee

11:30-13:00 The Irish Language
Dónall McGinley (Trinity College Dublin): “Hostility to Gaelic Language & Culture in Ireland as Cause & Symptom of National Stockholm Syndrome.”
Ian Wolohan Werkheiser (University of Texas Rio Grande Valley): “Irish as a Language of the Borderlands: Linguistic and Epistemic Justice, Anzaldúa, and Gaeilge”
Áine Mahon (University College Dublin): TBC

13:00-14:00 Lunch (at own expense)

14:00-15:30 Politics and Public Policy II
Sean Henry (Maynooth University): “Reimagining ethos, disrupting heteronormativity: The faith school at the nexus between immanence and transcendence”
Aideen Quilty (University College Dublin): “Queer/Feminist considerations of M/Others within Ireland’s contemporary abortion discourse”
Annie McKeown O'Donovan (NUI Galway): “Acts and Omissions in Fleming v Ireland and the Oireachtas, 2013. ”

15:30-16:00 Coffee

16:00-17:30 Irish Literature and Aesthetics
Joseph LaBine (University of Ottawa) and Chris Genovesi (Carleton University): ““a dash of the Dubliner…in Žižek”: Philosophy through the Medium of Irish Literature”
Graham Price (University of Limerick): “Accursed Time: Difference and Repetition in Gilles Deleuze and John McGahern”
Stan Erraught (Bucks New University): “Silent Music of Refusal: the Artwork against the State”
Connell Vaughan (Dublin Institute of Technology): “Reflections on John Moriarty’s Aesthetic and Mythological Approach to Contemporary Ireland”

17:45-19:00 Keynote Address 3: Prof. Luke Gibbons (Maynooth University)


Generously supported by the UCD School of Education, the UCD International Centre for Newman Studies, and the UCD Humanities Institute.

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Humanitites Institute

University College Dublin

Belfield

Dublin 4 Dublin

Ireland

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Refunds up to 1 day before event

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