On 20 May 2015, the British Association for Irish Studies proudly distributed its annual grants and essay prize at the Irish Embassy in London. This year we received 17 applications. John Lynam, Third Secretary of Political Affairs, presented the awards to our seven winners.
Muireann Crowley (University of Edinburgh) works on representations of authorial identity in early nineteenth century Irish and Scottish literature. Her thesis is entitled ‘Authorship and Authorial Identity in the Works of Lady Sydney Morgan’. Muireann will use her grant to visit the National Library of Ireland and Trinity College Dublin’s library to look at Sydney Morgan’s materials.
Richard Parfitt (Linacre College, Oxford) researches the role of music and dance in Irish nationalist groups during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. His thesis is entitled ‘Musical Culture and the Spirit of Irish Nationalism, 1848-1898’. Richard is planning a visit to Belfast to use a few different archives, including materials at the Linenhall Library and PRONI. In addition, Richard will conduct interviews to investigate nationalist musical culture during the Troubles. Richard also won the essay prize this year for his piece “’Oh, what matter, when for Erin dear we fall?”: Music and Irish Nationalism, 1848-1913’, for which he will receive £500 worth of Cambridge University Press books and his essay will feature in an upcoming issue of Irish Studies Review subject to peer review.
Naomi Lloyd-Jones (King’s College London) works on four nations approaches to modern British history. Her thesis is entitled ‘Deconstructing Westminster: a four nations history of the Irish Home Rule crisis, c.1886-1893’. Naomi is going to spend her BAIS grant on a research trip to Edinburgh. There she’ll look at party minute books to establish how proposals for Irish Home Rule were received in Scotland. Further she’ll examine Scottish Home Rule Association literature.
Simon Gallagher (Christ’s College, Cambridge) studies state institutional care and poor relief of Children in nineteenth century Ireland. His thesis is entitled ‘Childhood and the Public Institutional Care in Ireland, c.1850-1921’. He’ll spend his BAIS grant as part of funding for an extended research trip between September and December of this year. Simon will work at archives in Dublin, Cork and Thurles where he’ll examine records of Poor Law Boards of Guardians. He’ll look for local and regional trends in case studies of children in workhouses.
Tom O’Donnell (University College London) writes on medieval Irish childhood and child rearing. His thesis is entitled ‘The emotional Impact of Fosterage in Ireland during the Middle Ages’. He’ll use the grant to fund a research trip to Dublin where he will look at the manuscript evidence of the Irish life of St Ailbe. While the Latin life of this saint from Emly has been published, the vernacular one has not yet received this attention. It is preserved in the Royal Irish Academy.
James Stafford (Emmanuel College, Cambridge) researches the Anglo-Irish Union of 1801 in political and economic thought. His thesis is entitled ‘Enlightenment and the Transformation of Empire in Ireland, 1760-1840’. James will travel to Belfast to look at the Public Records Office of Northern Ireland’s holding before venturing to Dublin to check out documents at the National Library of Ireland and the Royal Dublin Society Library.
Robin Adams (St Peter’s College, Oxford) studies fundraising for the republican movement during the Irish War of Independence. His thesis is entitled ‘Shadow of a Taxman: Counter-state Finance in the Irish War of Independence (1919-1921)’. Robin plans to head to Dublin with his BAIS grant to examine documents at the National Archives of Ireland.
The BAIS council members and bursary winners enjoyed a lovely afternoon. We thank the Embassy for their generous and thoughtful hospitality, which led to many stimulating discussions. Keep on the lookout for more detailed blog posts from our winners about their research trips.
Written by: Maggie Scull