REMINDER: Association of Franco-Irish Studies CFP Deadline: 27 January 2017


Call for Papers

12th conference of AFIS (Association of Franco-Irish Studies)

Mary Immaculate College, Limerick

19-20 May, 2017

Theme: Patrimoine/Cultural Heritage in France and/or Ireland.

France has always been a country which cherishes its writers, artists, musicians and intellectuals. It positively discriminates in favour of its cultural heritage, because it realises the extent to which patrimoine is what attracts such huge numbers of visitors to the Hexagon. Ireland, on the other hand, while it can point to writers, actors, musicians and artists of a calibre that is way in excess of its size, seems reluctant to put in place the measures that are needed to allow these people to concentrate on what should be their primary concern. The setting up of Aosdána and the Arts Council, while welcome, does not cater adequately for those wishing to live solely through their art.   Sadly, bodies such as the Royal Irish Academy cannot rival the Académie Française in terms of cachet and prestige.

France can teach Ireland quite a lot in its foregrounding of local history and amenities, its clear outline of what each area, no matter how small, has to offer both French nationals and prospective visitors alike. In recent years, Ireland has increasingly begun to recognise the significance and worth of its own cultural heritage. How one interprets such value is germane to a nation’s relationship with its patrimoine:  tensions can arise between the maintenance and development of cultural assets for a heritage benefit and the commercialisation of those same cultural assets. Great strides have been made recently as Ireland, following in French footsteps, evinces some greater reverence for dúchas/  patrimoine.  However, the question may be asked: what can the French can teach the Irish in terms of balancing the demands of such competing interests?

Abstracts (in French or English) of about 150 words are invited for papers on any aspect of the theme before Friday 27 January, 2017 at 5 pm. The topics below are ones that might be considered, but they are only suggestions:

The musical heritage of France and/or Ireland

Literature and Culture in France and/or Ireland

The gastronomic heritage of France and /or Ireland

The cultural impact of Tourism in France and /or Ireland

The role of the intellectual in France and/or Ireland

How food and drink relate to French and/or Irish Identity

The material Culture of the Built Environment in France and/or Ireland.

Papers must not be longer than 20 minutes. Accommodation is available on the MIC campus for those who wish to stay onsite.

Abstracts and queries should be addressed to Eugene O’Brien ( and/or Eamon Maher (

Confirmed keynote speakers:

Dr Eóin Flannery (Mary Immaculate College, Limerick)

Professor Sylvie Mikowski (Université de Reims-Champagne-Ardenne)

Professor Harry White (University College Dublin)

In addition, the award-winning author of The Spinning Heart, Donal Ryan, will do a reading and talk about the life of a writer in Ireland.