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22.10.2017 14:25 Alter: 126 days

Philosophical Perspectives on Contemporary Ireland

Call for Papers

Theme: Philosophical Perspectives on Contemporary Ireland
Type: International Conference
Institution: School of Education and School of Philosophy,
University College Dublin
Location: Dublin (Ireland)
Date: 8.–9.3.2018
Deadline: 6.11.2017

Conference Theme

The social, political and economic landscape of contemporary Ireland
has inspired extensive scholarly debate both within and well beyond
the interdisciplinary field of Irish Studies. National and
international academic research has struggled to stay apace with a
rapidly transforming demographic where shockwaves of economic
meltdown and institutional abuse have intensified a long legacy of
identity and diasporic politics. Remarkable about this scholarly
work, however, is its distinct lack of a self-consciously
philosophical voice. While scholars from literary studies to law have
engaged comprehensively with the complexities of a post-Celtic Tiger
Ireland, scholars from philosophy have for the most part neglected to
intervene. Acknowledging the important exceptions to this broader
disciplinary tendency, this conference addresses this prominent
scholarly lacuna by bringing contemporary Ireland on to the
philosophical stage. Our aim is to enrich the fields of philosophy
and Irish Studies by encouraging a manifestly philosophical
exploration of contemporary issues and concerns.

In development of this project we seek to acknowledge the rare but
nonetheless exemplary existing work already published in this area.
Scholarship by thinkers working both inside and outside of philosophy
departments - notably by Richard Kearney (Boston College), Attracta
Ingram and Iseult Honohan (University College Dublin) - constitutes
early philosophical analysis of Irish themes that can fruitfully
inform theorisations of the present. Indeed, it is precisely the
pressing nature of contemporary issues in Ireland that has prompted
even more recent philosophical interest in the Irish context, notably
in feminist philosophy and philosophy of education. In these
contexts, revelations of institutional abuse, national responses to
trauma, and the ambivalent relationship to the Irish language have
been acknowledged as significant issues necessitating philosophical

Invited Abstracts

We invite abstracts that either engage with pioneering philosophical
work on Ireland, or develop entirely novel philosophical approaches
to the below (without being limited to these):

- Diaspora, exile, return
- Women’s bodies, women’s rights
- Institutionalisation and containment
- North-South dynamics
- Conflict, violence, resolution
- The Home, housing, and homelessness
- Economic boom and bust, social class, and the welfare state
- Political systems and governance
- Education, schooling, and curricula
- Nationalism, patriotism, and cosmopolitanism
- Citizenship and belonging
- Race, ethnicity, and identity
- Art, culture, and the socio-political
- Ethics, religion, and the secular
- Hiberno-English and/or the Irish language
- The relationship between philosophy and Irish Studies in the
 contemporary context

We welcome papers from a variety of expert areas, including Education,
Gender Studies, Politics, Sociology, Cultural Studies, and History.
Submission should, however, explicitly constitute and explicitly
engage philosophical treatments of contemporary Ireland.

Please send abstracts of no more than 200 words to
<clara.fischer(at)> and <aine.mahon(at)> by November 6th 2017.
Decisions will be communicated shortly thereafter.

Panel proposals will also be considered. Please submit individual
paper abstracts (200 words) for 3-4 speakers, in addition to a
general abstract (700 words) describing the panel theme, its relation
to the conference topic, and how individual papers speak to each
other as part of the panel.

Keynote Speakers

Professor Richard Kearney, Boston College
Professor Kathleen Lennon, University of Hull
Professor Luke Gibbons, Maynooth University

Conference Organisers

Dr. Clara Fischer & Dr. Áine Mahon, University College Dublin


Dr. Clara Fischer, Co-director
Dewey Studies Research Project
University College Dublin
Email: clara.fischer(at)