Call for Papers: Special Issue on Irish Studies and Digital Humanities [Deadline: January 15th, 2014]

In 2012, Stanley Fish posed the question: does the digital humanities offer new and better ways to realize traditional humanities goals? Or does the digital humanities completely change our understanding of what a humanities goal (and work in the humanities) might be? Practitioners within both the digital humanites and the humanities community more generally have offered many responses to Fish’s musings, but as Margaret Kelleher has observed, there is yet little investigation regarding the opportunities and implications afforded the study of Irish history, literature, and culture by electronic advances.

Addressing this seeming absence of engagement, issue 3 of Breac seeks to foreground the intersections between the digital humanities and work in the field of Irish Studies. What type of innovative resources, tools and methodologies have been produced by and for scholars working in the field? What challenges have those working on digital projects encountered? How does the design, development and use of digital tools relate to and/or advance traditional practices in Irish Studies? Positing the question in reverse, how can debates and practices in Irish Studies work in the digital humanities? What new challenges can Irish Studies bring to the digital humanities?

The guest editors of this issue of Breac Matthew Wilkens and Sonia Howell invite submissions addressing the results of digital humanities projects as well as commentaries on the intersections and possibilities for future collaborations between Irish Studies and the digital humanities. Capitalizing on Breac‘s digital form, we welcome submissions which can be best facilitated by an online journal.In keeping with Breac‘s commitment to linguistic diversity, we also welcome submissions in languages other than English. Other topics of interest include, but are by no means limited to:

  • Data mining
  • Geospatial analysis
  • Data visualization
  • Scholarly editing
  • New media
  • Digital literature or poetry
  • Digital humanities and the Irish language
  • Digital humanities and world literature

The issue will include essays from Hans Walter Gabler (editor-in-chief of the Critical and Synoptic Edition of James Joyce’s Ulysses) on conceiving a dynamic digital research site for James Joyce’s UlyssesMatthew Jockers (author of Macroanalysis and co-founder of the Stanford Literary Lab) on macroanalysis and Irish Studies, and Padraig Ó Macháin (Director of Irish Script on Screen) on how the digital revolution has affected Irish Studies and Irish-language scholarship. It will also feature a review of Franco Moretti’s Distant Reading by Joe Cleary (author of Literature, Partition and the Nation-State: Culture and Conflict in Ireland, Israel and Palestine). 

Typical articles for submission vary in length from 3,000-8,000 words, but the editors are happy to consider pieces that are shorter or longer. Deadline for submission of manuscripts is January 15, 2014. Full submission instructions are available at

Questions are welcome and should be sent to

We are also pleased to announce the launch of the Reviews page later this fall. Reviews will be a page dedicated to reviewing recent publications as well as showcasing recent projects and works in progress in the field. The page will operate on a rolling basis and an accompanying forum discussion will center around the most recent material. To that end, Reviews provides a space where researchers and students can discuss current trends and new scholarship, as well as invite commentary and receive feedback from Breac subscribers. Submissions for the Reviews page should be 500-1500 words and may include screen shots, URLs, and other forms of media.

About Breac

Breac is a peer-reviewed, open-access, paperless journal that publishes critical and creative work relating to Ireland and Irish Studies. Previous contributors include Roddy Doyle, Margaret Kelleher, David Lloyd, Paige Reynolds, Brian Singleton, and Colm Tóibín. Among the journal’s many features is a forum section that seeks to cultivate a global conversation around the published articles among its readers, students, and scholars. It also periodically streams live and recorded events through the website’sBreaCam. Subscribing to the journal is entirely free; we encourage you to visit the website at