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American Conference

FOR IRISH STUDIES Winter 2011 Newsletter


The 2011 International Meeting of The American Conference for Irish Studies Global Networks and Local Ties University of Wisconsin–Madison March 30 - April 2, 2011

The hardworking conference organizers have provided updated information about the conference. These are only some of the highlights. Much more will be offered. It looks to be a terrific event. Hope to see you there!

Lodgings Lowell Center

PRESIDENT

James Rogers jrogers@stthomas.edu

VICE PRESIDENT Sean Farrell sfarrel1@niu.edu

INTERNATIONAL TREASURER Daire Keogh, daire.keogh@spd.dcu.ie

TREASURER

Nicholas Wolf nwolf2@gmu.edu

SECRETARY

Michael de Nie mdenie@westga.edu

PAST PRESIDENT AND INTERNTIONAL REPRESENTATIVE Jose Lanters lanters@uwm.edu

Madison Concourse Hotel

GRADUATE STUDENT REPRESENTATIVE

John Malloy john.malloy@marquette.edu

MIDWESTERN REPRESENTATIVE Timothy McMahon timothy.g.mcmahon@marquette.edu

SOUTHERN REPRESENTATIVE Howard Keeley irish@georgiasouthern.edu

NEW ENGLAND REPRESENTATIVE Mary Burke mary.2.burke@uconn.edu

MID-ATLANTIC REPRESENTATIVE Kate Costello-Sullivan sullivkp@lemoyne.edu

WESTERN REPRESENTATIVE Kendall Reid kreid@tacomacc.edu

CELTIC STUDIES REPRESENTATIVE Thomas Finan tjfinan@mindspring.com

ARTS REPRESENTATIVE Donna Potts dlpotts@ksu.edu

HISTORY REPRESENTATIVE Ryan Dye dyeryand@sau.edu

SOCIAL SCIENCE REPRESENTATIVE Brigittine French frenchb@grinnell.edu

IRISH LANGUAGE REPRESENTATIVE Nancy Stenson stenson@umn.edu

LITERATURE REPRESENTATIVE Karen Steele k.steele@tcu.edu


Featured Performers and Events Concert with Liz Carroll and Dáithí Sproule Liz Carroll

Liz Carroll is one of the masters of traditional Irish music. Her recordings and appearances on concert stages, television and radio have established Liz as one of traditional music’s most sought-after performers.

Dáithí Sproule

Dáithí Sproule of Derry, whose first group was the legendary Skara Brae, has lived for many years in Minnesota. He is one of Irish music’s most respected guitarists and singers in English and Irish. He is known for his innovative arrangements of traditional songs.

“Open-Eyed and Full-Throated”: An Evening of Poetry Readings by ACIS Authors This year’s conference will continue the tradition of poetry readings of works by ACIS authors. Readings will be held Friday afternoon and Friday evening. The readings are organized by Nathalie Anderson, an internationally known poet and librettist.

Remembering A Memory: A Film Screening

Directed by Robert McMahon, Produced by Ronald Rudin Remembering a Memory explores the various stories inspired by the immense

Celtic Cross constructed in 1909 on Grosse-Ile, a tiny island near Quebec City, site of the largest famine cemetery outside Ireland. Remembering a Memory reflects on how and why the memories evoked by Grosse-Ile have so dramatically shifted over the past century. The film’s producer, Ronald Rudin, will be introducing the film and answer questions at the ACIS screening of this film. Rudin is a Professor of History and Research Fellow at Concordia University.


Blazing the Trail: The O’Kalems in Ireland

Written & Directed by Peter Flynn | Produced by Tony Tracy US/Ireland 2011, Video, Color and b/w, 86 mins. In 1910 the New York based Kalem Film Company made history by sending its leading filmmakers—to County Kerry, in Ireland. They would return again and again. Blazing the Trail tells the story of director and screenwriter Sidney Olcott’s and lead actress Gene Gauntier’s adventures in Ireland: it recounts how they made films without electricity, using locals as actors; how they provoked the condemnation of a local priest and ran afoul of the British authorities.

Wife to James Whelan, by Teresa Deevy

Video of live performance by Mint Theatre Company Directed by Jonathan Bank Part of “The Teresa Deevy Project” “The Teresa Deevy Project” at ACIS will include screenings of the video recording the Mint Theater production in 2010 of Wife to James Whelan, which had never been produced except in a studio production in Dublin in 1956. Deevy (1894-1963) was a leading Abbey playwright in the 1930s. A roundtable discussion of the production will be held during the conference prior to a reception sponsored by the Fordham University Institute of Irish Studies to introduce panelists to conferees and to launch a new publication of Teresa Deevy’s works. Read more about the Teresa Deevy Project.

The 2011 Wisconsin Film Festival Film schedule announced: Thursday, March 3 Tickets on sale: Saturday, March 5 (noon) The 2011 festival, March 30-April 3, will play in nine theatres, all within walking distance of the conference, in the heart of Madison. Held concurrently with the ACIS conference, this year’s festival will include several films of Irish interest. For more information on the festival, go to http://www.wifilmfest.org/

Keynote Speakers Julia Wright - March 31—Thursday—10:00 AM Canada Research Chair in European Studies Associate Professor, Department of English, Dalhousie University

Kerby Miller - April 1—Friday—10:00 AM Curator’s Professor, Department of History, University of Missouri


Christopher Morash - April 2—Saturday—10:45 Professor of English, National University of Ireland, Maynooth

Liz Carroll – March 31—Thursday—concert 7:30 Traditional Irish Fiddle Master

Important: Register on or before March 1st for the discount registration fee. Contact For information related to the ACIS Conference Program and Schedule, contact: Dr. Mary Trotter E-mail mtrotter@wisc.edu or acis2011@gmail.com For information about ACIS Conference Registration and General Information, contact: - or Jodi Roberts Dr. Chelcy Bowles Phone: 608-263-6670 Phone: 608-265-5629 FAX: 608-265-4555 E-mail: cbowles@dcs.wisc.edu E-mail: music@dcs.wisc.edu

Greetings: Tom Archdeacon and I have been troubled by a drop-off in the number of quality manuscripts coming to us for the Ireland and the Irish Diaspora Series of the University of Wisconsin Press. The series has had a number of notable books, including some co-publishing ventures. A list follows this message. We had to slow our rate of production for a while a couple of years ago, due to financial conditions at the University of Wisconsin Press. That storm has now passed completely. For their own set of reasons, the Press and the editor closed another series on “Irish Studies in Literature and Culture,” but that decision had and has no implications for our series. The Ireland and the Irish Diaspora Series will not be loosening standards, but because Tom and I have little in the pipeline, grand opportunities exist for outstanding manuscripts. We hope to hear from you. Jim Donnelly Professor Emeritus of History University of Wisconsin-Madison

SERIES TITLES: A Nation of Politicians: Gender, Patriotism, and Political Culture in Late Eighteenth-Century Ireland Padhraig Higgins 2010

Captain Rock: The Irish Agrarian Rebellion of 1821–1824 James S. Donnelly, Jr. 2009

Ireland’s New Worlds: Immigrants, Politics, and Society in the United States and Australia, 1815–1922 Malcolm Campbell 2008

Tourism, Landscape, and the Irish Character: British Travel Writers in Pre-Famine Ireland William H. A. Williams 2008

Remembering the Year of the French: Irish Folk History and Social Memory Guy Beiner 2007

The Bible War in Ireland: The “Second Reformation” and the Polarization of Protestant-Catholic Relations, 1800–1840 Irene Whelan 2006 Co-published with Lilliput Press, Dublin


Call For Papers 2012 MLA Convention HOSTS: Seattle, Washington DATE: 5–8 January 2012 PROPOSALS DUE: March 21, 2011 Contact: Karen Steele - k.steele@tcu.edu Website: Click Here The American Conference for Irish Studies will host one panel “POLITICS OF LANGUAGE” at the January 2012 MLA convention in Seattle. Papers should explore the social, cultural, or political implications of Irish languages and literatures, especially as they relate to Irish national or postcolonial identity, from the 17th century to the present. Papers might include discussions of translation, Celticism, historical breaks and continuities, minority discourse, collapse of Celtic Tiger, and more. Guidelines: Please send 200-word abstracts to Karen Steele. All panelists must be registered MLA members by April 1, 2011 to be included on the Seattle conference program; all panelists must also be registered ACIS members.

ACIS-West 2011: Call for Papers “Ireland and Globalization” HOSTS: San José State University DATE: October 21 – 23, 2011 PROPOSALS DUE: 15 May 2011

Contact: Matthew Spangler - aciswest2011@gmail.com Website: Click Here The ACIS West conference organizers welcome you to join us at San José State University in California for the twentyseventh annual meeting of Irish studies scholars and artists. This interdisciplinary conference features a range of lectures, readings, exhibits, and performances. We welcome papers on any and all aspects of Irish studies, including literature, theatre, film, dance, history, economics, sociology, music, religion, politics, language, culture, diaspora, conflict and border studies, as well as the material and visual arts. We particularly encourage papers that explore the broad theme of Ireland and Globalization. We recognize globalization, as a phenomenon, is nothing new. As such, in addition to papers that explore contemporary globalization, we welcome those that explore Ireland and the global prior to the last decade. We also recognize that globalization comes in many forms. Papers that examine its cultural, political, or economic roots and effects are all welcome. Keynote speaker is Dr. Patrick Lonergan of the National University of Ireland, Galway, author of Theatre and

Globalization: Irish Drama in the Celtic Tiger Era, winner of the Theatre Book Prize 2008. Guidelines: Please submit your proposal by May 15, 2011 to aciswest2011@gmail.com. Individual paper and panel submissions (3-4 participants) are welcome, as are proposals for live performances, dramatic readings, poster presentations, or exhibits. The proposal should be 250-500 words in length, and include a brief bio of the submitter (50 words). In the case of panel proposals, live performances, dramatic readings, posters, or exhibits, please submit a rationale (250-500 words), as well as bios for each of the presenters. Please send any questions to Matthew Spangler, Associate Professor of Performance Studies, San José State University, at the conference email address, or spanglermatthew@yahoo.com. San José State University is California’s oldest institution of public higher education. The campus is located on the southern end of San Francisco Bay in downtown San José (Pop. 945,000), hub of the world-famous Silicon Valley high-technology research and development center. Many of California’s most popular national, recreational, and cultural attractions are conveniently close. San Francisco, Berkeley, Stanford, Santa Cruz, the Monterrey Peninsula, redwood forests, wineries, and the California coastline are all within an hour’s drive of downtown San José.


International Conference CFP 100 Myles: The International Flann O’Brien Centenary Conference HOSTS: University of Vienna DATE: July 24-26, 2011 PROPOSALS DUE: 21 Feb. 2011 Contact: Werner Huber viennacis.anglistik@univie.ac.at To celebrate Flann O’Brien’s centenary year, the Department of English Studies at the University of Vienna invites panel and paper proposals for 100 Myles: The International Flann O’Brien Centenary Conference by the new deadline of February 21. We are honoured to announce that keynote addresses will be given at the conference by esteemed Irish poet and author Anthony Cronin (author of the biography No Laughing Matter: The Life and Times of Flann O’Brien), Keith Hopper (author of Flann O’Brien: a

Portrait of the Artist as a Young PostModernist), Frank McNally (Irish Times columnist of “An Irish-

Flann O’Brien, offering numerous theatrical renditions. In this picturesque setting, the conference also boasts a rich and varied social programme, with film screenings, performances, and much more in the offing. Proposal topics may include, but are not limited to, the following areas of interest: Flann and his peers/heirs (Flann & Joyce, Flann & Beckett, Flann & Synge, etc.) Translating Flann; Flann O’Brien & Popular Culture; Flann O’Brien & Literary Tradition; Reassessing Flann O’Brien’s Legacy/Influence at 100; Appropriations/Adaptations of Flann (Cultural, Textual, Theatrical, Film); Flann O’Brien between Modernism and Post-Modernism; Flann O’Brien and Theories of the Comic / Theories of Genre; Self-Plagiarism as Style / Pseudonymy as Literary Technique; Flann O’Brien and Science (Physics, Pataphysics, Human Biology, etc.); The Plain People of Ireland: Flann, the Politics of Culture, & the Culture of Politics.

man’s Diary”), Austrian filmmaker Kurt Palm (director of In Schwimmen-zwei-Vãgel, a film adaptation of At Swim-TwoBirds), and Harry Rowohlt (German performer and translator of O’Nolan’s works).

Guidelines: If you wish to propose a paper (in English, not exceeding 20 minutes), please submit your title and an abstract of 250 words accompanied by a short biographical sketch. In addition to the presentation of papers we invite proposals for alternative forms of discussion: e.g. debate motions (and debaters), themed panels, poster sessions (esp. for PhD students).

Vienna provides a beautiful and fitting location for such a celebration of O’Brien’s life and works and not only through a deSelbyesque understanding of geography. The Austrian capital has a rich tradition of adapting the work of Brian O’Nolan/

Contact Werner Huber Vienna Centre for Irish Studies University of Vienna Spitalgasse Vienna, Austria viennacis.anglistik@univie.ac.at

Spanish Association For Irish Studies X Aedei International Conference “(Un)Becoming Irishness: Imperfections and National Identities” HOSTS: University of Oviedo DATE: 25-28 May 2011 PROPOSALS DUE: 3 March 2011 Contact: Contact Luz Mar Gonzalez Arias AEDEI2011@gmail.com The binary nature of traditional Western thought is partly responsible for the generalised assumption that perfection is the

opposite of imperfection and that in order to achieve a full understanding of the latter, defining the characteristics of the former would suffice. Over the last decades Ireland has experienced deep transformations in its economic, cultural and physical landscapes that have called into question all the idealisations upon which the identity of the nation had been based. In his latest publication, Enough


is Enough (Faber 2010), Fintan O’Toole suggests that the Irish Republic was built upon false myths that are at odds with the harsher – and altogether more dystopian – realities of Irish life. The sole comprehension of utopian national mythologies proves unable to tackle issues such as the degradation of Irish landscapes in the name of “progress”, the religious scandals or the crumbling down of previously sacred pillars of Irishness. Addressing the shadowy side of life appears to be particularly relevant in a time characterised by deep instability.

Guidelines: We invite papers that will assess the important role that the imperfect, the disquieting and the dystopian have historically had – or are currently having – in the construction of Irish identities. Papers should not exceed the 20-minute delivery, in English or Spanish, and may address, from a variety of disciplines and fields of knowledge. Abstracts of around 250 words should be emailed to AEDEI2011@gmail.com by Wednesday 16th March 2011. Please do not hesitate to contact the organiser for any queries you may have.

2011 North American James Joyce Conference “Joyce in Science and Art” HOSTS: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens,

San Marino, and California Institute of Technology, Pasadena. DATE: June 12-16, 2011 PROPOSALS DUE: March 1, 2011 Contact: Jim LeBlanc - JDL8@cornell.edu Website: Click Here Although proposals for papers, panels, and presentations on any and all aspects of Joyce studies will be considered for the 2011 meeting, the Conference Committee especially encourages submissions that address scientific and artistic aspects of Joyce’s work and its subsequent influence. Possible areas of emphasis for the 2011 meeting include, but are not limited to: • Scientific foundations of Joyce’s work • The union of Bloom and Stephen under the designations “The Scientific. The Artistic” • Computers and textual editing • Physics and Joyce on the nature of things • Psychology and artistic creation • Creativity and the brain • Classification and ordering • Phenomenology and the senses • The history of natural science • The development of language • Evolution • Medicine • Painting and drawing • Sculpture and other plastic arts • Music, dance, and dramatic performance • Film and video (including YouTube) • Interior design • Cartoons, animation, and computer graphics Guidelines: Please plan on limiting individual presentations to 15-20 minutes. Send proposals via electronic mail to Jim LeBlanc - JDL8@cornell. edu. All presenters must be members in good standing of the International James Joyce Foundation.


From Jack’s Army to Jedward: Ireland Masculinity and Popular Culture 1990-2010 HOSTS: Huston School of Film and Digital Media--NUI Galway DATE: September 23-25, 2011 PROPOSALS DUE: April 4th 2011 Contact: Tony Tracy - tony.tracy@nuigalway.ie Conn Holohan - conn.holohan@nuigalway.ie 1990 was a watershed year in contemporary Irish history for several reasons, but perhaps the most resonant was the election of Mary Robinson, feminist, activist and lawyer, to the position of Irish President, a position previously reserved as a retiring ground for elderly male politicians A new and exciting phase of Irish history was suddenly in the offing and Robinson’s inclusive vision of Ireland looked beyond earlier understandings of the state to give a central importance to the women of Ireland and those forgotten by generations of emigration: the Irish Diaspora. Slowly but incrementally over the following two decades the patriarchal authority of Irish political and religious structures collapsed. During this period Irish popular culture generated a variety of masculinities across genres and forms.

In fiction and theatre - the stage and screen plays of Conor McPherson, Martin McDonagh and Mark O’Rowe; the soft masculinity of Louise Walsh’s boybands – Boyzone, Westlife, Jedward; the cinema of the Celtic Tiger; Irish TV drama - Bachelor’s Walk, Pure Mule, Love/Hate; national sporting moments circulating around male sports stars and teams. As traditional role models and models of male authority gradually eroded and Ireland became a more multicultural environment, popular culture assumed an ever-increasing centrality in exploring tensions in Irish manhood. Guidelines: We invite papers and panels exploring manhood in Irish popular culture – sport, film and television, theatre and fiction, music and media - for a conference to take place at NUI Galway September 23-25th 2011. (Proposals of 300-500 words) should be sent to tony.tracy@nuigalway.ie /conn.holohan@ nuigalway.ie

ACIS-Scottish Lit Panel At MLA Convention HOSTS: MLA Convention in Seattle, WA DATE: January 2012 PROPOSALS DUE: 15 March 2011 Contact: Matthew Wickman (matthew_wickman@byu.edu) CALL FOR PAPERS 2012 MLA CONVENTION, SEATTLE, WASHINGTON The American Conference for Irish Studies and the Scottish Literature Discussion Group will be collaborating to sponsor one panel at the January 2012 MLA convention in Seattle. Please note that this panel is non-guaranteed. Guidelines: Please send 250-word abstracts focusing on Celtic Modernism: Modernist traditions of Ireland, Scotland, Wales, and/or other Celtic nations; modernisms of the self-imagined peripheries. All panelists must be registered MLA members by April 1, 2011 to be included on the Seattle conference program; all panelists must also be registered ACIS members. Matthew Wickman Dept of English, BYU Provo, UT 84602 matthew_wickman@byu.edu


Lawrence J. McCaffrey Lecture of Irish-American Studies 2011 Lecture: Tuesday, March 1, 7:00pm SAU Rogalski Center St. Ambrose University This lecture series honors one of the world’s foremost historians of Ireland and Irish America, Dr. Lawrence J. McCaffrey. A 1949 graduate of St. Ambrose, Dr. McCaffrey was one of the three co-founders of the American Conference for Irish Studies. He has published numerous books and continues to publish articles, book reviews, and updates.

Dr. Daniel Tobin, Emerson College “In the Sububrbs of Ulro: The Metaphysics of Work in IrishAmerican Poetry” Daniel Tobin is the author of five books of poems, Where the World is Made (University Press of New England 1999), Double Life (Louisiana State University Press, 2004), The Narrows (Four Way Books, 2005), Second Things (Four Way Books, 2008), and Belated Heavens (Four Way Books, 2010), as well as the critical study Passage to the Center: Imagination and the Sacred in the Poetry of Seamus Heaney (University Press of Kentucky, 1999). Tobin has also edited The Book of Irish American Poetry from the Eighteenth Century to the Present (University of Notre Dame Press, 2007), Light in the Hand: The Selected Poems Lola Ridge (Quale Press, 2007), and (with Pimone Triplett) Poet’s Work, Poet’s Play: Essays on the Practice and the Art (University of Michigan Press, 2007). A book of essays on Irish-American poetry, Awake in America, is forthcoming from the Notre Dame University Press in 2011. Among his awards are the “The Discovery/The Nation Award,” The Robert Penn Warren Award, The Greensboro Review Prize, the Robert Frost Fellowship, the Katherine Bakeless Nason Prize, and fellowships in poetry from the National Endowment for the Arts and the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation. His work has been anthologized in Hammer and Blaze, The Bread Loaf Anthology of New American Poets, Poetry Daily Essentials 2007, Broken Land: Poems of Brooklyn, Third Rail: The Poetry of Rock and Roll, The Norton Introduction to Poetry, and many other collections. He is currently Interim Dean of the School of the Arts at Emerson College in Boston. Further specifics about the lecture can be found here: http://web.sau.edu/irishstudies/lecture.htm

News from ACIS Regional Conference Organizers 2011 Mid-Atlantic The Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference for the coming year will be at Manhattan College in New York. Contact: Deirdre O’Leary: deirdre.oleary@manhattan.edu The Mid-Atlantic Region of the ACIS comprises New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia, as well as the District of Columbia. Including some of the states most densely populated with colleges and well-established Irish


Studies programs, our Region hosts engaging and thematically-broad conferences each year, usually in the fall. ACIS members hailing from the Mid-Atlantic region should use this website for regular updates on Irish-related events, readings, and lectures in our region, as well as to communicate with others in the Mid-Atlantic area. Join the Mid-Atlantic ACIS listserv for announcements and notices of CFPs and events: Click Here

New England The New England Regional Conference for the coming year will be at Bridgewater State University, MA. Details to come! Contact: Ellen Scheible - escheible@bridgew.edu

Midwest The Midwest Regional Conference for the coming year will be at Fargo, ND/Moorhead, MN (twin cities), Oct. 6-8, 2011. The conference organizers are planning a great program! Contact: Sandy Pearce: pearces@mnstate.edu The area served by the Midwest region of ACIS is the states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Kentucky, and Missouri.

West The West Regional Conference “Ireland & Globalization� for the coming year will be at San Jose State University in California, October 21-23. See official CFP in this Newsletter. Contact: Matthew Spangler, spanglermatthew@yahoo.com or aciswest2011@gmail.com Regional Website: Click Here Link to 2010 program: Click Here

Moore Institute Visiting Fellowships Applications are being accept for a Moore Institute Visiting Fellowship (2011-12) at the National University of Ireland, Galway, closing date 1st March 2011. These fellowships may be held in any field of the Humanities and Social Sciences, can be academic or practise related, and are offered in association with the James Hardiman Library. Fellowship terms can last from one week to one semester. The Moore Institute for Research in the Humanities and Social Studies will host fellows during their tenure. Its work is supported by the Andrew Mellon Foundation, the Marie Curie scheme, the Irish Research Council in the Humanities and Social Sciences, and the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions. For a list of people, events, and current projects see here. The James Hardiman Library has significant archives, including the papers of the Druid Theatre, Lyric Theatre, An Taibhdhearc (the Irish language national theatre), John McGahern, Thomas Kilroy and Joe Burke, as well as two major collections dealing with the


recent ‘Troubles’, principally the papers of Ruairí Ó Brádaigh and Brendan Duddy. For details click here. The Library possesses substantial printed and electronic resources. The University’s longstanding commitment to the Irish language provides further opportunities for engaging with the Connemara Gaeltacht. Visiting fellows will have access to all the major repositories on the island of Ireland. Details on terms, condition, and how to apply for a Moore Institute Visiting Fellowship are available here. The Moore Institute Visiting Fellowships are supported by the Galway University Foundation, the James Hardiman Library, the Office of the Vice President for Research, and the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies.

Presidents’ Corner ACIS REGIONALS While in the Ph.D. program at the University of Iowa, I was a student in George Mosse’s seventeenth-century British History seminar and a teaching assistant for his large Western Civilization course. A few years later while enjoying a conversation with George at a Chicago American Historical Association conference in Chicago, I told him I would soon be off to attend a session. He asked why, telling me that all good papers were published and I could read them in print. George told me that the most important part of conferences was socializing because I could learn more in pleasant visits with other historians than in listening to papers. Influenced by his advice, when helping to found ACIS I tried to emphasize its social as well as scholarly dimensions. Over the years I have listened to and enjoyed many excellent ACIS presentations but the best part of conferences has been talking with friends and exchanging ideas on Irish history and lit-

erature and just having fun. ACIS members so enjoyed our yearly spring meetings that I decided to initiate regional gatherings every autumn. They began in 1976 with the first Midwest regional at Chicago’s Loyola University. In time, other regional organizations and conferences followed. As ACIS grew larger and so many conference attendees became strangers, I found pleasure at regional more than national conferences. They provided more opportunities to enjoy the company of old friends. In addition to socializing, there were other positive aspects of regional gatherings. With the exception of New England, other regionals have covered vast amounts of territory. Therefore, opportunities to meet and talk with people sharing common interests were few. And for many, journeys to national conferences often were inconvenient and expensive. Regional meetings partially solved those problems. Many of those attending a local regional have been non-academics interested in things Irish. A good number have so enjoyed the experience that they have become loyal ACIS members on both national and regional levels. Larry McCaffrey Loyola University of Chicago

FROM JIM ROGERS By-law change to appear on ACIS ballot In the upcoming ACIS election members will be asked to vote on a by-law change recommended by the executive committee, in addition to the slate of officers nominated for the ACIS executive. After a lengthy discussion over E-mail, the executive

committee decided to put forward a proposal made several years ago (during the presidency of John Harrington) to combine the Celtic Studies position with that of the Irish Language representative. The Celtic Studies slot would then cease to exist. The ACIS governing documents state that bylaws can only “be amended with the approval of at least sixty percent of those members voting in a mail ballot.” The proposal will therefore appear on the mailed ballot that will be sent to all members early in 2011.


The reasons behind this proposal are that there is currently almost no constituency for Celtic Studies, as it is generally understood, within ACIS’s programming; that very few of the persons doing Celtic Studies in North America are actually members of ACIS; and consequently, that it has been extremely difficult to find candidates for the position, which often has been held by a person whose training is in some other discipline. (Other times, the position has necessarily run unopposed.)

years of ACIS, and also that important research (including ACIS prizewinning books) continues to appear in the field. Nonetheless, the consensus of the executive is that this an overdue change, and that abolishing the slot would not necessarily preclude future growth in the area in our conferences etc.

The executive committee recognizes that Celtic Studies and Early Irish History played an important part in the formative

James Rogers President

Thank you for giving this your thoughtful attention as you fill out the ballot.

Short Note for those looking to Elections update your maps We are finalizing the list of candidates for the 2011 ACIS ElecEducation Sales Manager for National Geographic Maps. We have just published a very detailed and very beautiful map of Ireland. http://www.natgeomaps.com/ireland. As the Center for Irish Studies, I wanted to contact you to see if this map would be of interest to you. There are a variety of different options of use (education, décor, give aways). Take a look at the link and let me know if you are interested in the map. Thanks, Brent Douthit National Geographic Maps

tions and will mail candidate biographies and voting instructions to all members shortly. As in 2009, voting will be online through the ACIS website –though we will send a paper ballot to those who request it (in 2009, only one member chose this option.) A proposed by-law change is also on the ballot. Members will be able to vote from February 15th to March 15th. The new ACIS executive will be announced at the upcoming national meeting at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the new executive will meet for the first time at the close of that conference. See you in Madison, Sean

ACIS Dues As you know, ACIS dues now run through the calendar year. Singleyear memberships expire at the end of each calendar year. Your annual membership dues in the American Conference for Irish Studies dues are essential to the organization. To re-join, go to the ACIS website at http://www.acisweb.com/ index.php and click on “Join ACIS” at the bottom of the page. You may pay by credit card though a secure PayPal account, or print out a form and mail your dues to Nicholas Wolf, VCU Department of History, PO Box 842001, 811 S. Cathedral Place, Richmond, VA 23284-2001 E-mail: nwolf2@gmu.edu Thank you in advance for your continued membership in the American Conference for Irish Studies. Michael de Nie Secretary

Newsletter Editor The ACIS Newsletter appears three times per year, in Fall, Winter, and Spring. Deadlines for submissions are Oct. 1 for Fall, Jan 1 for Winter, and April 1 for Spring. Please send official material, conference pictures, tidbits, and news to Jill Brady Hampton via email: Jillh@usca.edu. Thanks!

Serious newsletter editor Jill Hampton and design genius Aaron Burkhart at work.

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2011 ACIS Winter Newsletter