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Irish Studies Conference

Irish Studies Conference

18th Australasian Irish Studies conference: The Irish in Australia 1788 to the present

Friday 1 - Sunday 3 July 2011

Explored the impact of Irish culture, religion, language and music in shaping Australian identity at the Irish Studies Association annual conference.

Speakers from across Australia and Ireland spent two days at the National Museum in Canberra, which is hosting the exhibition Not Just Ned: A true history of the Irish in Australia.

The third day of the conference was held at St Clement's Retreat and Conference Centre in Galong, once the home of Irishman Ned Ryan, a convict who became a respected local pastoralist.

Audio and transcripts of the plenary sessions will progressively be made available from our audio on demand section.

audio_w15 Audio on demand - Not Just Ned series

PROGRAM as at 10 June 2011

Program: Friday 1 July 2011

Visions Theatre, National Museum of Australia, Lawson Crescent, Acton Peninsula, Canberra

8.30–9.15am Registration

Andrew Sayers, Director, National Museum of Australia


Plenary session

A few of my favourite things – some objects from the National Museum's Not Just Ned exhibition
Richard Reid, Senior Curator, National Museum of Australia

audio_w15 Audio and transcript of 'A few of my favourite things'

10.30–11am Morning tea

Three parallel sessions

Session one

Mannix, the Royal Navy and the Republic
Jeff Kildea

Irish Melbourne, 1914–1920 – decline of Nicholas O'Donnell and the rise of Daniel Mannix
Val Noone

St Patrick's Day in Melbourne, 1840–1925
William Flood

Session two

Sabotaging Duffy's Land Act of 1862
Tony Earls

Death or Liberty, Irish political prisoners transported to Australia, 1788-1868
Tony Moore

Beulah, Appin – insights into early Irish-Australia
Carol Liston/Megan Martin

Session three

Not Just Green – Towards a better understanding of Adelaide's Orangemen in the 1870s
Fidelma Breen

Christopher Coveny, 1885-1888, Irish-Australian painter.
Anne Cunningham

Educating Catholics at university in 19th century Australia - St John's College, University of Sydney
Perry McIntyre


Lunch and viewing of Not Just Ned: A true history of the Irish in Australia

Annual general meeting of ISAANZ


Plenary Session

Sorting out the Irish immigrants of colonial Australia
Eric Richards, Flinders University, Adelaide

3–3.30pm Afternoon tea

Three parallel sessions (9 speakers)

Session one

En-Gendering the Nation – Gender-bending and nationalism in Miles Franklin's My Brilliant Career and Emily Lawless' Grania: the story of an island
Frances Devlin-Glass

James Hogan – author of The Irish in Australia – the pioneering work
Patrick Morgan

Irish theatre in Australia in the 1890s and the 'other' Boucicault
Peter Kuch

Session two

'Bowed down before the Crucified'
Anne-Maree Whitaker

Archbishop Robert William Spence, a trunk full of trowels and the expansion of Catholic institutions in South Australia, 1914–1934
Anne Herraman

Round Towers in Ireland and Australia
Pamela O'Neill

Session three

'As good as a white man any day' – racial stereotyping and the Irish in colonial Australia
Dianne Hall

Politics, culture and the press – the Irish and their newspapers in 1840s New South Wales
Kevin Molloy

Nugent Farm, Richmond: the history and restoration of the last Tasmanian home of William Smith O'Brien
Peter MacFie

6–8pm Reception
Embassy of Ireland
20 Arkana Street, Yarralumla, ACT

Program: Saturday 2 July 2011

Visions Theatre, National Museum of Australia, Lawson Crescent, Acton Peninsula, Canberra


Plenary session

The National Museum of Ireland: an ideological history
Pat Cooke, School of Art History and Cultural History, National University of Ireland

10.30–11am Morning tea

Three parallel sessions (9 speakers)

Session one

Beating a path to the door – the Irish welcome to Queensland
Jenny Harrison

Governor Bourke's war
Christine Wright

The Language, the Census and the Rising
Dymphna Lonergan

Session two

Trauma and Haunting: the Irish language as ruin/revenant
Jonathan O'Neill

When the Inconstant became Noah's Ark – the curious fate of an immigrant vessel in the Australasian trade
Brad Patterson

The shipwreck, the girls, the Clare Servants' Depot, and some consequences – chapters in the lives of some Nashwauk girls
Stephanie James

Session three

Irish convict women and the Rajah quilt
Dianne Snowden

Inter-war Irish immigrant domestic servants to South Australia
Margrette Kleinig

'135 Years on' – the Catalpa escape exhibition
Sandra Murray

12.30–2.30pm Lunch and viewing of Not Just Ned: A true history of the Irish in Australia.

Plenary session

The Identity Game or How Irish is Australia?
Shane Carmody, Director, Collections and Access, State Library of Victoria

3.30–4pm Afternoon tea

Plenary session
'Not Just Ned' - what sort of history of the Irish in Australia?

A symposium chaired by Orla Tunney, Deputy Head of Mission, Embassy of Ireland, short contributions from Pat Cooke, Shane Carmody and Val Noone, followed by offerings from conference participants.

7 for 7.30pm

Conference dinner
The Forrest Hotel and Apartments dining room
30 National Circuit, Barton, ACT
Pre-dinner drinks start 6.30pm

After dinner speaker
Professor Rónán McDonald, University of New South Wales: Personal reflections on Queen Elizabeth II's recent visit to Ireland.

Program: Sunday 3 July 2011

'Galong House', St Clement's Retreat and Conference Centre, Galong, New South Wales

8.30am Bus leaves National Museum of Australia for Galong House
10–10.30am Arrive Galong House and morning tea

Plenary session

Ireland's Spiritual Empires
Hilary Carey, University of Newcastle


Two parallel sessions (5 speakers)

Session one

Grace McCrohan's prayer book and other immigrant treasures
Liz Rushen

Representations of Irishness in Perth Irish pubs
Oonagh Quigley

Memory, myth and mystery: insights gained from 26 years of collecting oral histories of the Irish in Australia
Siobhan McHugh

Session two

The Irish in Rural Victoria', 1851–1891
Charles Fahey

Dancing on St Patrick's Day
Jenny Gall

Eureka, the Reform Charter and the Irish
Philip Moore

1–1.45pm Lunch

Plenary session

'Galong House' – An Irish-Australian Historic Site
Jeff Brownrigg and Cheryl Mongan


Final session

The true history of Irish music in Australia
Jeff Brownrigg

3.30–4pm Afternoon tea
Viewing of Galong House
4pm Bus leaves for Canberra
5.30pm Bus arrives in Canberra


Full registration

3 day registration $260
3 day registration concession $190

Day registration

Friday, 1 July, National Museum of Australia
Standard: 1 day registration (Friday) $130
Standard concession: 1 day registration Friday) $120

Saturday, 2 July, National Museum of Australia
Standard: 1 day registration (Saturday) $130.00
Standard concession: 1 day registration (Saturday) $120

Sunday, 3 July, Galong House
Standard: 1 day registration (Sunday) $130
Standard concession: 1 day registration (Sunday) $120
*Fees include transportation to Galong

Early bird special

Early bird 3 day registration $190
Early bird 3 day registration Concession $160.00
*Offer ends close of business Friday 17 June 2011

Conference dinner

This includes a 3 course dinner (Saturday 2 July) and drinks on arrival. Cash bar in operation from 7pm.

Conference speaker dinner ticket $25
Conference dinner ticket $55
Additional conference dinner ticket $55

Fees include lunch, morning and afternoon tea for chosen days.

Fees are in Australian Dollars and are GST free.

Preferred accommodation supplier

Forrest Hotel and Apartments, 30 National Circuit, Canberra 2603 Ph: (02) 6203 4300
Please mention the Conference to receive a discounted rate.


Presenters should note that all costs to attend the conference must be met from their own resources. As a commitment to attend and support the conference, accepting presenters are required to pay and register for the full conference program or for the day of their presentation. The conference dinner on Saturday 2 July will be a total of $25 for registered speakers.