Call for Papers: Ireland in the World

The School of Communications at DCU and Boston College-Ireland’s Centre for Irish Programmes invite papers for a one-day conference to be held at Boston College-Ireland, 42 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin on 9 May 2008.

The conference seeks to explore how
Ireland was presented and represented through official and quasi-official cultural channels from the 1930s to the 1960s but with a particular focus on the period from 1945 to 1960. The immediate post-war period saw Ireland actively seeking to emerge from the isolation experienced during the Second World War. The need to portray Ireland as a competent manager of funds in a bid to secure Marshall Aid, and to attempt to bring Irish-Americans onside in a renewed bid to bring the “evil of partition” to the attention of the world created a new political context for cultural production. In that respect even the 1948 announcement by John A. Costello of the establishment of the Republic whilst on a trip to Canada can be read as performative, designed to demonstrate the re-emergence of a new Ireland at least as much to an international audience as to a domestic one.

The conference seeks to explore how this pre-Economic Development outward embrace was manifested in state-sponsored/related activities. We are seeking to define such activities in the broadest possible manner. Thus in addition to the establishment of bodies such as the Cultural Relations Committee within the Department of External Affairs, we would also be interested in papers related to:

  • The planned Short Wave Radio Transmitter for Radio Eireann in 1948,
  • The establishment of the Irish News Agency in 1948
  • The establishment of the Arts Council in 1951
  • Those touristic representations offered by the Irish Tourist Board and related institutions such as Aer Lingus and An Toastal,
  • The establishment of a national soccer team representing the 26 counties
  • President Kennedy’s visit to Ireland
  • Images of Ireland projected through ‘official’ ephemera (stamps, coins etc.)

This is merely an indicative list and far from exhaustive. Abstracts of no more than 200 words, together with short personal descriptions should be mailed to Roddy Flynn and
Mike Cronin by 31 December 2007.

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