The Centre for New Irish Studies is hosted by the Trinity Long Room Hub Arts and Humanities Research Institute (TLRH). The Centre and the Hub, support and enhance research within one of TCD’s arts and humanities-led interdisciplinary research themes: ‘Making Ireland’. The research theme explores the profoundly complex and interconnecting areas of Irish studies, and the local and global manifestations of Ireland, bringing Trinity’s expertise on all things Irish to scholars across the world and to Ireland’s citizens. In doing so, Making Ireland further the discipline of Irish Studies, and achieves the aim of the Hub and the Centre. It is an expression of the collective ambition of over 80 researchers in 15 disciplines across all three faculties in the university to tap the transformative potential of purposeful collaboration in Irish Studies.
Head of the Centre:
Dr Mark Hennessey
Dr Mark Hennessy, Theme Convener, Assistant Professor, Department of Geography
Dr Sarah Kerr, Project Officer, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, TLRH
Professor Jane Ohlmeyer, Erasmus Smith's Professor of Modern History, Director of the Trinity Long Room Hub, Arts & Humanities Research Institute
Professor David Dickson, Professor of Modern History, School of Histories and Humanities
Professor Micheál Ó Siochrú, Head of Department, School of Histories and Humanities
Dr Ann Buckley, Research Fellow, Trinity Medival History Research Centre, School of History and Humanities
Dr Melissa Sihra, Assistant Professor, Drama, School of Creative Arts
Dr Philip McEvansoneya, Lecturer in the History of Painting, Department of History of Art and Architecture, School of Histories and Humanities
Prof Ciaran O’Neill, School of Histories and Humanities
Dr Paul Delaney, Associate Professor, Head of Discipline, School of English
Dr Rosie Lavan, Assistant Professor of Irish Studies, Literary Arts Officer, School of English
Dr Peter Crooks, Assistant Professor in Medieval History, School of Histories and Humanities
Dr Sam Slote, Associate Professor, Director of Research, School of English
Professor Patrick Geoghegan, Professor in Modern History, School of Histories and Humanities
Dr Patrick Wyse Jackson, Associate Professor, Head of School, School of Natural Sciences
Dr Ruth Barton, Associate Professor in Film Studies and Drama, School of Creative Arts
Due to the rich and complex field of enquiry, we have organized the research within four thematic clusters:
· Making Medieval and Early Modern Ireland: The historical range of the work being carried out in Irish Studies in Trinity is extensive, with the scholarly gaze extending back to the earliest evidence of human habitation on the island.
· Making Ireland 1500-1900: The impulses behind and the impact of English colonial projects in Ireland have been central to research activity on the early modern period, many of the issues having first been mapped out by Aidan Clarke (Fellow Emeritus). The work of Ciaran Brady and his students has re-assessed the tectonic shifts in the religious and political policies of the Tudors towards Ireland, and that of Jane Ohlmeyer and Micheál Ó Siochrú has transformed the study of war and social conflict in the seventeenth century.
· Making Modern Ireland: In the mid-1990s, the Department of History made a strategic decision to seek philanthropic and corporate funding to establish a chair in contemporary (i.e., post-1920) Irish history. Eunan O’Halpin, chair-holder and director of the Centre for Contemporary Irish History has, together with Anne Dolan and other colleagues, dramatically expanded research numbers in twentieth-century Ireland and led a number of funded research projects into Irish state-building, diplomacy and security.
· Irish Studies and the Library: The College’s own collections, as well as its proximity to more than a dozen repositories and cultural institutions, place Trinity in a unique position to act as a world reference point for Irish Studies.
With such a vast number of staff, early career researchers and PhD students working within the theme the publication grows every month. An up-to-date list can be viewed here: <a data-cke-saved-href="https://www.tcd.ie/research/themes/making-ireland/publications/
Beyond 2022: Ireland's National Memory
On 30 June 1922 the Treasury Room containing Ireland’s documentary heritage dating back to the thirteenth century was destroyed in a cataclysmic explosion and fire at the Four Courts. On the centenary of that blaze in 2022, this project will launch a Virtual Record Treasury that reconstructs the nation’s archives and its collective memories. In partnership with the National Archives of Ireland and other national and international institutions, Beyond 2022 seeks to ensure a lasting and inspirational legacy beyond the current decade of centenaries. The centrepiece of the project is new an online resource — the Virtual Record Treasury — which will provide a digital reconstruction of the Record Treasury of the Public Record Office of Ireland as it existed in 1922, on the eve of the fire. This will become not only an essential platform for academic research but also a public resource with global reach and impact among the Irish at home and abroad.
Monastic Ireland: Landscape and Settlement
Funded by the Irish Research Council and in partnership with the Discovery Programme and UCC, Monastic Ireland is revealing the palimpsest of history preserved in Ireland’s rich heritage of medieval monastic ruins. Monasteries were at the core of most settlements in Ireland. This project combines cutting-edge digital survey techniques and original historical research to explore the manner in which the material remains of Ireland’s medieval monasteries have been preserved and adapted, so telling the story of community life in Ireland over the centuries.
Irish Lives in War and Revolution
In 2014 Trinity's Department of History launched Ireland’s most successful MOOC (Massive Open Online Course), Irish Lives in War and Revolution: Exploring Ireland’s History 1912-1923. Over 29,000 learners have participated in the course to date, with a third run planned for March 2016.
Down Survey of Ireland
The Down Survey of Ireland in the 1650s was the first ever detailed land survey on a national scale anywhere in the world. This project has brought together for the first time in over 300 years all the surviving Down Survey maps and made them available as an open-access online resource. The public response has been incredible with over 100,000 visits to the website within weeks of the launch in 2013. With the support of the Irish Manuscripts Commission, the project has now entered its second phase to create an online research platform for the study of early modern Ireland.
National Collection of Children's Books
The National Collection of Children’s Books (NCCB) is a unique resource uncovering a forgotten aspect of Ireland’s rich and varied cultural heritage. NCCB is the fruit of a two-year interdisciplinary and inter-institutional project funded by the Irish Research Council, which is examining children’s books collections across five libraries: the Church of Ireland College of Education, the National Library, Pearse Street Library, St Patrick’s College, Drumcondra, and Trinity. The project will establish Dublin, and Ireland, as a world centre for the study of children's literature.
Rex Ingram Website
This project celebrates the life and work of one of Hollywood’s greatest silent-era directors — the Irish exile, Rex Ingram. Best known now for The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (1921), this handsome, strong-willed visionary was responsible for a succession of films for Metro Pictures (later MGM) that topped the box office and were hailed as masterpieces by the critics. The project has reclaimed for Irish cinema one of the most successful filmmakers that Ireland has produced.
Making Ireland is leading a new, interdisciplinary, elective module called ‘Interdisciplinary approaches to landscapes’ which is part of the Trinity Education Project. More details on this forward thinking initiative, introducing interdisciplinarity at undergraduate level, can be found here: https://www.tcd.ie/TEP/