Dr Deaglán Ó Donghaile of LJMU English spent three weeks of September in the United States promoting the project Marginal Irish Modernisms which secured a grant of over £30,000 from the prestigious Arts and Humanities Research Council.
This is a new scholarly network that was established by Deaglán and LJMU English’s Dr Gerry Smyth (the project’s leader), in order to explore the work of marginalised or critically-neglected Irish modernist writers. Other writers who whose work will form part of the project include Maeve Brennan, J. W. Dunne, Lord Dunsany, Lennox Robinson and John Rutherford.
Deaglán met with modernism scholars at the University of California, Los Angeles, at Arizona State University in Phoenix and at the Mapping Yeats Symposium, held in Kansas City, Missouri. At Arizona State University, he spoke to staff and students from the Barrett Honors College on the writings of Ernie O’Malley, an Irish republican author whose memoirs offer an aesthetically experimental reflection on the Irish War of Independence.
At UCLA, Deaglán also had the chance to meet Distinguished Professor Joseph Bristow, who sits on the Marginal Irish Modernism project’s Advisory Board, to discuss a number of immediate and longer-term plans for collaborative ventures, including conferencing and future dissemination of scholarship generated by the network. Professor Bristow, a hugely influential scholar, is himself an expert on the work of Oscar Wilde.
During his visit to Kansas City from September 2nd– 6th, Deaglán spoke at the Mapping Yeats symposium, organised by Professor Stephen Dilks of the University of Missouri. Organised as part of the broader Kansas City Irish Festival, this event brought together scholars, poets and musicians from the across United States, as well as from Ireland and England, to discuss the legacy of William Butler Yeats’ poetry.