Links between India and Ireland to be explored at NUI Galway conference on Colon

Monday, 31 May 2004

Scholars from all over the world will attend the Fourth Galway Conference on Colonialism, which will be held at NUI Galway, from 2-5 June 2004. The theme of this year's conference is 'India and Ireland' and the distinguished visitors will include established and emerging scholars from India as well as some of the outstanding scholars in the world of cultural and colonial studies from Europe, Australia, the United Kingdom and North America.

The conference is dedicated to the memory of the late Edward Said, whose provocative and pioneering work in the area of colonial and post-colonial studies continues to inform the work of scholars working in those areas. Edward Said had close connections with NUI Galway and was honoured by the University when he was conferred with an honorary Doctor of Literature in June 1999.

According to Dr. Louis de Paor, Director of the Centre for Irish Studies which is hosting the conference, "This event will bring together the most exciting scholars in the field of culture and colonialism". Topics to be addressed during the four-day conference include the role that Irish soldiers, administrators and civil servants played in the building of the Raj; the relationship between Irish republicanism and Indian nationalism; Irish religious missionaries and the notion of a 'spiritual empire'; Indian pariahs and Irish 'tinkers'; borders and partitions; newspapers and national identities; and India and the Brehon Laws.

Distinguished guest speakers will include Aijaz Ahmad from Jawaharlal Nehru University, Dipesh Chakrabarty from the University of Chicago, Luke Gibbons from the University of Notre Dame, and Joe Cleary from NUI Maynooth.

Among the more intriguing titles in the conference programme are 'The "Pickled Earl": Richard Southwell Bourke, Earl of Mayo', 'Tea, Power, and the Colonial Body', 'Mother India/Mother Ireland', 'The Famine Queen Visits India', 'Shades of Difference: Towards an Analysis of the Resemblances Between the Orange and Saffron Orders in Northern Ireland and India', and 'Orientalism and Celticism Unplugged: The Suffering Indian Nun and the Drunken Irish Priest in Local Catholic Lore'.

The conference proceedings will also include a reading by Cauvery Madhaven, author of Paddy Indian, at Galway Arts Centre, and the launch of a new book by Luke Gibbons entitled Gaelic Gothic, published by Arlen House for the Centre for Irish Studies.

The conference programme is available at:

www.nuigalway.ie/research/centre_irish_studies/india_ireland%20conf.htm

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