The Irish Society for Theatre Research
Cumann Taighde Amharclannaíochta na hÉireann
The Irish Society for Theatre Research (ISTR) aims to facilitate research on Irish theatre in its national and international contexts in terms of an engagement with the full spectrum of Irish theatre from page to stage. The field of Irish Theatre Studies is being transformed by new approaches to the rich history of Irish theatre and by the remarkable diversity of contemporary theatrical practice. ISTR was founded in order to develop and promote new and challenging ways of thinking about Irish theatre which engage with diverse contemporary historiographical, theoretical, cultural and performance frameworks.
News on 2013 ISTR Conference
"The Irish and The City"
Irish Society for Theatre Research Conference
Birkbeck, University of London
November 1-2, 2013
In his article 'The Right to the City', David Harvey suggests that cities are the outcome of values, desires and social relations: "The question of what kind of city we want cannot be divorced from that of what kind of social ties, relationship to nature, lifestyles, technologies and aesthetic values we desire." Given that theatres tend to be situated at the heart of cities, and are often important architectural and political features of the urban landscape, it is surprising that so little scholarly attention has been paid to the relationship between the Irish, the urban and the theatrical. Since De Valera's apocryphal 'comely maidens', Irish performance has more often been focused on the depiction of rural crossroads rather than on the ring roads, motorways, railways and airports that lead the modern visitor to the cities that host these performances.
Recent scholarship has argued however, that the urban environment in which theatre takes place is crucial for comprehending how performance works within the city, and on the city, as Michael McKinnie has argued: "space is not simply the pre-existing context for theatre practice […] but a series of places through which theatrical and spatial forms are mutually constituted." The role that theatre and cultural performance have played in imagining, shaping and producing 'Irish' cities is therefore worthy of consideration - not only in relation to the cities of the island of Ireland, but equally in the major metropolitan centres that were sometimes literally built by the Irish - Liverpool, London, New York, Boston, Toronto, Sydney, Auckland, and so on.
This conference aims to pay attention to the depiction of the urban landscape in Irish theatre, to the relationship between cultural performance and cities, and to emphasise the ways in which the performance of Irishness has been constituted, imagined and received within the structures of funding, urban planning, spatial politics, metropolitanism, cultural capital, neoliberalism and so on.
The conference invites proposals (and ideas for panels) from all aspects of theatre research but with emphasis on the following questions:
Proposals on other topics in the field of Irish theatre (not just plays by Irish authors but the full range of performances that are produced in Ireland and around the world under the rubric of 'Irishness') are also welcome.
Only members of the ISTR may present papers at the conference. Membership application forms will be available during the event.
Please include with your proposal your name and institutional affiliation (if any).
NEW SCHOLARS' PRIZE
Check our new page for details about the New Scholars' Prize 2013 as well as winners for 2012 and 2011.
Deadline: 1 June 2013
PERFORMANCE, NATION AND GLOBALIZATION SUMMER SCHOOL
Funded by the Irish Research Council
National University of Ireland, Galway
17-18 July 2013
This two-day Summer School explores the interrelationships between performance and nation in an era of increasing globalization. We will consider major international dramatists such as J.M Synge and David Greig, but the discussion will also take in other forms of performance, including the Eurovision Song Contests, recent American TV drama including Mad Men and Breaking Bad, and new devised work from Ireland by such companies as Brokentalkers and Anu Productions.
The event takes place at National University of
Ireland, Galway, and coincides with the Galway Arts Festival (www.galwayartsfestival.com).
Participation in the event is free. While the event is open to all, we
particularly welcome applications from the following people:
Ireland-based PhD students and post-doctoral fellows working on Drama, Theatre
and/or Performance Studies.
international PhD students and post-doctoral fellows working on Irish theatre
Ireland-based MA students with definite plans to undertake a PhD in an area
relevant to the theme of summer school
· Any Ireland-based academics who may wish to develop new courses or research on areas relevant to the theme of the summer school.
To apply for a place on the programme, please send
an email, outlining your reasons for applying, to email@example.com and Patrick.firstname.lastname@example.org
Deadline for applications is 15 June 2013. More information on the conference, including the conference timetable and a list of abstracts can be downloaded here
2012 ISTR Conference
Perform, or Else!
New Perspectives on Theatre Studies
Irish Society for Theatre Research, National University of Ireland, Galway, 26-28 October 2012
Our most sincere thanks to Dr. Patrick Lonergan, Dr. Lionel Pilkington, Dr. Charlotte McIvor and Dr. Siobhan O'Gorman for organising the 2012 ISTR Conference at NUI Galway.
For full conference programme go to our Conference page
Carysfort Press and New Publications
Check our Publications for details on commissions by Carysfort Press for the following books:
The Theatre of Mark O'Rowe
The Theatre of Enda Walsh
Devised Performance in Irish Theatre: Histories and Contemporary Practice
Also on the same page, please find details on ISTR Publications, Books by ISTR members and a list of books of interest to members.