03 Jul 2017

Congratulations to Dr Ciara Breathnach on her appointment to the National Archives Advisory Council. See full list here

09 Jun 2017

Dr Karol Mullaney-Dignam, Department of History, was at Durham University recently for the ‘Conflict, healing, and the arts in the long nineteenth century’ Conference hosted by the Centre for Nineteenth-Century Studies (CNCS). This conference investigated ways in which the arts – materially, sonically, and aesthetically – promoted, transformed, and negated experiences of healing for soldiers, civilians, and communities between 1774 and 1918 across European Empires, the Americas, Asia, and Africa. ‘Healing’ was considered in a broad sense, including both physical and psychological healing occurring at personal and inter- and intra-cultural levels.

The conference took place at Durham Castle, home to the university’s oldest college. In addition to networking, and conducting fieldwork on arts and music therapies, Dr Mullaney-Dignam chaired a panel on healing, gender, and patient experiences during the First World War. The papers discussed bandsmen, stretcher-bearers, and the defence of masculinity in French and British memoirs; arts, crafts and care in the First Australian Auxiliary Hospital in England; music, healing, and masculinity in war-time Wales.

Dr Mullaney-Dignam’s research activity at Durham was funded by an AHSS Faculty Research Committee Funding Award.

09 Jun 2017

On 25 May 2017, Dr Karol Mullaney-Dignam, Department of History, spoke at a colloquium on ‘Historical debates within arts scholarship and practice’ at the University of Glasgow. The event was organised by the Eighteenth-century Arts Education Research Network (EAERN) which is funded by the Royal Society of Edinburgh to bring together scholars and practitioners to discuss and investigate new approaches in using eighteenth-century arts educational materials.

Dr Mullaney-Dignam is the only international core network member. She presented a paper entitled ‘Hidden histories: arts, education, and élite Irish household records’ which drew on her published case studies of the related FitzGerald and Conolly families in Co. Kildare. It considered the role of arts scholarship in enhancing historical accounts, particularly as these aspects of the past have tended to fall outside what has been monumentalised as historically significant. Issues relating to the historiography of music in Ireland and the challenges of constructing historical narratives from ‘silent’ primary sources removed from practice-based or performance contexts were also outlined.

The purpose of the colloquium, the first of three proposed for 2017 and 2018, was to consider current methodologies in using eighteenth-century education sources, especially for the purposes of practice-based research, and the possible challenges and benefits of interdisciplinary collaborations with other arts subjects. Relevant items from Special Collections at the University of Glasgow Library were displayed in the colloquium presentation space and discussed by presenters. The evening ended with a participatory social exercise: learning late eighteenth-century group dances to music supplied by members of Concerto Caledonia’s Dance Band! The following day,

Dr Mullaney-Dignam attended a meeting of the core network at the University to discuss future network events, including a workshop series commencing in September 2017, necessary areas of research, and the future of the network. Information on the aims of EAERN can be found on the website: as well as on the EAERN Facebook page and Twitter @EAERNing Dr Mullaney-Dignam’s research activity at Glasgow was funded by the Royal Society of Edinburgh and the University of Limerick’s AHSS Faculty Research Committee.

02 Jun 2017

The Department of History today held a prize-giving ceremony for students from Scoil Íde agus Iosef, Abbeyfeale, for their winning documentary film. The 1916 centenary film documentary competition, organised by Dr Vincent O’Connell, was aimed at students in second level education. With almost thirty entrants to the competition, the standard was very high. Read more here.

01 Jun 2017
Congratulations to Associate Professor Bernadette Whelan MRIA who has become a member of the Council of the Royal Irish Academy