The Centre for Irish Studies aims to teach, research and promote Irish culture in European and global contexts. Our focus is chiefly on modern literature in English and Irish, theatre, film, the Irish language, music and theory. Our students and graduates are the future ambassadors of Irish culture, working as scholars, translators, broadcasters, journalists, producers or civil servants.
Publications associated with the Centre include books on modern and contemporary Irish drama, James Joyce and Samuel Beckett, Irish poetry, and Irish-language literature. The Centre manages an extensive bibliography of translations from Irish literature into Czech and Slovak and reflections of Czech authors and intellectuals on Irish culture and politics (compiled by Daniel Samek).
The Centre maintains an extensive catalogue of Irish-interest books and journals. A unique collection of books about Celtic Languages, Archaeology and Studies, as well as the entire imprint of the Irish University Review, are available in the central library of the Faculty of Arts.
The centre maintains active links with third-level institutions and research centres worldwide, particularly through the International Association for the Study of Irish Literatures (IASIL) and the European Federation of Associations and Centres of Irish Studies (EFACIS). Conferences organized include the 2010 International James Joyce Symposium, the 2005 annual conference of IASIL (each featuring over 300 delegates), the 2017 ‘Ar an Imeall i Lár an Domhain?’: An tairseachúlacht i litríocht agus i gcultúr na hÉireann agus na hEorpa conference, and conferences on the work of James Joyce (2003, 2005, 2007) and Samuel Beckett (2006, 2018).
Guest speakers have included R.F. Foster (Oxford), Declan Kiberd (UCD), Edna Longley (QUB), Luke Gibbons (Notre Dame), Nicholas Grene (TCD), Brian Singleton (TCD), Joep Leerssen (Amsterdam), Margaret Kelleher (NUIM/UCD), Christopher Morash (TCD), Máirín Nic Eoin (DCU), Matthew Campbell (Sheffield/York), Patricia Coughlan (UCC), Mícheál MacCraith (UCG), Michael Cronin (DCU), or Werner Huber (Vienna).
The Centre’s plentiful public activities include readings by Irish authors, for instance, poets Seamus Heaney, Michael Longley, Derek Mahon, Medbh McGuckian, Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill, Louis de Paor, David Wheatley, Vona Groarke, Aifric Mac Aodha, Ailbhe Darcy, prose writers Glenn Patterson, Kevin Barry, Lisa McInerney and their translators, performances of Irish music, screenings of films, art exhibitions and book launches. Our staff serve as regular consultants on Irish affairs to the media, publishers and theatres, and include award-winning literary translators. Through our activities, we strive to contribute to the development of existing links between the Irish and Czech cultures and the forging of new ones.
Teaching is organized in an autonomous programme within an umbrella MA in Anglophone Literatures and Cultures. A limited number of courses are also offered within a BA programme in English and American Studies. Moreover, postgraduate research is sought in the areas of the Centre’s staff expertise. Applications for the MA as well as PhD programme are welcome from both Czech and international students – feel free to contact us for more details at any time.