Call for Papers AFIS 2015


Tourism, Sport and Culture

 11th AFIS Conference

University of La Rochelle

21-23 May 2015


Travel is one of Man’s main driving forces. The sea is an important feature of the geography of both Ireland and France, so it is perhaps unsurprising that waves of migration have been such an important aspect of the history of both countries. In ancient times and still today, we travel through necessity (wars, persecutions, economic, political and climatic reasons), by vocation (religious and humanitarian) and for pleasure (tourism, culture and sport).

Those great travellers, the Irish monks, went across Europe, ‘the whole of Hibernia crossing the seas despite storms and coming over with its herds of philosophers landing on our shores’ (Héric d’Auxerre); the Anglo-Normans invaded Ireland and the flight of the ‘Wild Geese’ brought the Irish aristocracy to the French coasts;  the creation of  the ritual of the ‘Grand Tour’ in the 17th century led many artists such as Delacroix, the Rochelais Eugène Fromentin and  the Rochefortais writer Pierre Loti, to travel across Europe and the Middle-East.

Henry Miller wrote that “one’s destination is never a place, but rather a new way of looking at things.” Travel challenges the foundations of our identity, which rely on the opposing tidal forces of inclusion and exclusion. It develops the imagination, which is continually seeking to define and redefine our identity in the liminal space where we meet the Other. Thus, a meeting with the Other through travel often leads to a change of perspective in our attitudes to culture, identity, politics, etc.

For this conference, we would welcome papers on all aspects of travel.

Possible topics may include but are not limited to:

–         Travel literature, travellers’ stories, and correspondence (including blogs);

–         Irish and French travelling artists;

–         The ‘Travellers’ in Ireland and/or ‘gens du voyage’ in France;

–         Organisation of tourism in France, Ireland and Europe (Tourist Boards, marketing, state policies and town management etc.);

–         Cultural tourism;

–         New forms of tourism (à la carte, sustainable, volunteerism etc.);

–         Organisation and attendance of festivals (professional, amateur, university/students);

–         Pilgrimages, travel for humanitarian purposes;

–         Organisation of sporting events;

–         Nautical sport and leisure;

–         Construction of identity through sport and leisure;

–         Gaelic, Basque sports;

–         Representations of sport and leisure in literature, theatre, cinema, TV series, comics, graphic novels;

–         Hobbies (sport, culture, fun, arts…);

–         Gastronomy.

The abstracts (250 words) and a short biography should be sent before 1st February 2015 to:

Confirmed keynotes speakers:

Dr Philip Dine (NUI Galway)

Professor Barbara Wright (Trinity College Dublin)

NB:  Only paid-up members of AFIS are eligible to read papers at this conference. Membership subscriptions for AFIS may be taken out or renewed with conference registration.