The Tim Robinson Archive – Iarsma Film (2016)

Iarsma: Fragments from the Archive is the Artists in the Archive project initiated by Nessa Cronin, Centre for Irish Studies, NUI Galway, in 2016. Three artists were commissioned to work collaboratively on the theme of landscape in relation to the Tim Robinson Archive housed in the James Hardiman Library, NUI Galway . Composer and musician Tim Collins, dancer… | Read on »

Texas Tough? COVID-19 and the Precarity of the Lone Star State

Texas is known for being big and tough but the COVID-19 pandemic threatens to reveal it as under-serviced, impoverished and facing a systemic collapse that will devastate the most vulnerable. “Tough” is a well-known brand for Texas and Texans: they are bootstrappers, gritty, and down-to-earth. As one writer after the storms of 2010 put it,… | Read on »

We are all waiting now: the new global sense of precarity

Towards the end of Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, Vladimir declares that “we are no longer alone, waiting for the night”. He muses that we are all in fact metaphorically “waiting for Godot”, and that life is mostly “waiting for … waiting”. These past few weeks have felt like that in Ireland, and no doubt… | Read on »

Death without Ritual will be Hard on Communities

Reprinted from the Sunday Independent (Ireland), p. 18. Some years ago, Thomas Lynch, an American undertaker and poet, with a long connection to County Clare, was asked what made a good funeral. “I think”, he said, “the essentials are a corpse, mourners, somebody to broker the changed relationship between the living and the dead—the peace… | Read on »

Effects of Covid-19 on our society foretold by Defoe long ago

Daniel Defoe’s 1722 work of fiction about the Great Plague in London still has much to teach us as we struggle today, writes Daniel Carey Pandemics of the past have taken on fresh interest as we find ourselves confronted by a novel virus in Covid-19. Daniel Defoe’s 1722 work of historical fiction, A Journal of… | Read on »

Reflections on the American Superbowl, 2020

Once the US sport of football consolidated its position as the national game (supplanting baseball), it assigned itself a distinctive role in the concluding game of the year – the Superbowl. The evening marks a concerted attempted to capture the country in a single night, to represent it to itself, expressing the nation’s pieties, its… | Read on »

Media Ecology: Ireland, America, and RTÉ

In August, 2010, I moved to Ireland, to teach and research at NUI Galway as a Fulbright Scholar, for a period 2-weeks shy of a year. For many reasons too numerous to review here, it was one of the best years of my life. I’d been to Ireland before, several times, including a childhood family visit… | Read on »

Adventures in Zero G: Knowledge Exchange in Early Medieval Digital Humanities

My current understanding of digital humanities is that it is something like the International Space Station (ISS): ISS constitutes an entirely new environment in which research takes place, and I think the digital medium can potentially be understood as something analogous. On the one hand, ISS is used for experiments on growing plants in space, which you might compare to digital textual analysis—that is, you bring something existing… | Read on »

Boris Johnson, Winston Churchill and the United States of Europe

This article originally appeared on RTÉ Brainstorm Opinion: it’s instructive to look at the various speeches and articles by Johnson’s hero Churchill on Britain’s place in Europe Much has been made of Boris Johnson’s Churchillian self-conception. His rotundity, irreverence and maverick qualities ostensibly qualify him for the comparison. Now that he has ascended to the premiership,… | Read on »