Samuel Beckett and the 'State' of Ireland Conference (2011)

Call for Papers for a conference to be held at University College Dublin
Samuel Beckett in Paris. Photograph: John Minihan.
Samuel Beckett and the ‘State’ of Ireland Conference
University College Dublin, July 8-9, 2011
Hosted by The Humanities Institute of Ireland
Famous throughout the civilised world and the Irish Free State
I have also decided to remind myself of my present state before embarking on my stories. I think this is a mistake.
Malone Dies

About the Conference

Samuel Beckett’s relationship to his home country of Ireland has always been a curious interaction. Years of criticism interpreted his Parisian exile and switch to French as Beckett ‘turning his back on Ireland’. However, recent scholarship has opened up a much wider excavation of Beckett’s connections with Ireland. This is evident in a number of recent publications which interrogate Beckett’s relationship to his native country, in particular Emilie Morin’s Samuel Beckett and the Problem of Irishness (2009) and Beckett and Ireland (2010), edited by Sean Kennedy. In addition, the publication in 2009 of the first volume of Beckett’s letters, covering the period from 1929 to 1940, has re-iterated for scholars the lasting influences and shaping experiences that Ireland represented for Beckett. The staging for the first time of a conference solely devoted to Beckett’s relationship to Ireland aims to encourage an exchange of ideas which will inform ongoing critical efforts to construct an Irish Beckett.

This two day conference aims to host a wide selection of both graduate and professional papers with the aim of highlighting new and dynamic work being done on Samuel Beckett. Proposals are sought from researchers working in the field in general and are particularly welcome from those working in disciplines outside of the traditional confines of Beckett studies, especially from those working on Beckett in the Irish language. Keynote speakers will be established scholars within the field.

Topics will include but are not limited to:

Representations of Ireland in Beckett
Beckett and Irish Studies
Beckett and Irish Drama
Beckett as an Irish Protestant
Beckett and the Free State
Beckett and the Irish Language
Representations of Landscape
Exile and Home

Abstracts not exceeding 300 words for 20 minute papers should be emailed to: Beckettconference2011@gmail.com.

The deadline for proposals is Friday May 6, 2011.

Conference Programme

“Beckett and the ‘State’ of Ireland”
UCD Conference 2011
Friday 8th
9:45 Opening Remarks.

10:00-11:15 Protestantism in Beckett’s Ireland
Aaron Smith, QUB: ‘The Siege Mentality’ Beckett’s Irish Protestantism in the Poetry and Krapp’s Last Tape.”
Stephen Kelly, UCD: “Flight from Perception: ‘Preceivedness’, Ireland and the Protestant God in Beckett’s Film.”
Chair: Scott Hamilton

11:15-11:45 Break/Coffee

11:45-1:00 Language and landscape: Representations of Ireland
Dr. Arthur Broomfield: “Representations of Ireland in Beckett.”
Feargal Whelan, UCD: “‘Gazing straight before him through the anti-dazzle windscreen’: The Young Anglo-Irishman’s difficulty with Irish landscapes.”
Chair: Dr. Graham Price

1:00-2:00 Lunch

2:00-3:15 The Functional Body?
Adam Winstanley, University of York, England: ‘ “Des selles de ses citoyens”: Beckett, Swift and the Coprophilic Economy of Ballyba’.
Dr. Paul Stewart, University of Nicosia, Cyprus: ‘ “Like fucking a quag”. Ireland, Sex and Exile’.
Chair: Dr. Graham Price

3:30-4:20 Plenary Session
Professor Anthony Roche, UCD:
“The ‘Irish’ Translation of En attendant Godot.”
Chair: Dr. Nick Johnson

4:20-4:45 Break Tea/Coffee

4:45 -5:45 Plenary Session
Professor Eoin O’Brien, UCD:
“The Annihilation of Reality – The Beckett Country.”
Chair: Professor Anthony Roche

6:00 Reception

Saturday 9th

10:00-11:15 Beckett’s Irish Novel
Scott Hamilton, UCD : “Mercier and Camier: Beckett, Exile, Myth and 1940s Ireland.”
Alexey Boronenko, Ural State University, Russia: “Irish Humour in Samuel Beckett’s early Novels.”
Chair: Dr. Alan Graham

11:15-11:45 Break/Coffee

11:45-1:00 Beckett and Irish Poets
Damien Lennon, UCD: “Self-Determination in Beckett’s Mirlitonnades.”
Dr. Alan Graham, UCD: “Irish Bookman: “Recent Irish Poetry” and “Censorship in the Saorstát.”
Chair: Feargal Whelan

1:00-2:00 Lunch

2:00-3:15 Beckett, Drama and the Performance of Irishness
David Clare, UCD: “Anglo-Irish ‘Distortion’: Double Exposure in Francis Bacon’s Portraits and the Liminal Setting in Samuel Beckett’s The Old Tune.”
Dr. Nicholas Johnson, TCD: “Krapp History: A Late Evening in the Future.”
Chair: Dr. Mark Nixon

3:30-4:45 Keynote
Professor Seán Kennedy, St. Mary’s University, Halifax:
“Beckett and the ‘State’ of Ireland: Edmund Spenser, Famine Memory and the Discontents of Humanism in Endgame”.
Chair: Dr. Sam Slote

4:45-5:15 Break Tea/Coffee

5:15-6:15 Keynote
Dr. Mark Nixon, University of Reading, England:
“Beckett Reading Irish Literature”
Chair: Dr. P.J. Mathews

8:00 Conference Dinner.
The Farm: Dawson Street

Times are subject to change.

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