Border Literatures

Online Reading and Conversation Series, September 2021 - March 2022

Border Literatures is an online reading and conversation series launching in September 2021 and  running until March 2022, building discussion of literature into the rich historical conversations that have framed the Decade of Centenaries. The series has been co-curated by the National Library and Professor Nicholas Allen, in  association with the Willson Centre for Humanities and Arts at the University of Georgia.

Border Literatures will share diverse literary perspectives on the experience of living in, crossing through, and reflecting on the century that has passed since the partition of the island of Ireland. It will reflect on how ideas of the border find their way into Irish literature as boundaries, markers, departures and returns.  Through book reading and conversation, the series will explore how writers have shaped these ideas from their individual perspectives, in order to experience a range of literary representations of the border, from the historical to the contemporary. 

We invite you to join us and to share your thought and suggestion using #BorderLits

The Programme

The first event in the series, on 22 September at 7pm, will be an introductory conversation, sharing multiple perspectives on borders in different cultural contexts.  After a welcome from Dr Sandra Collins, Director of The National Library of Ireland, a discussion moderated by Professor Nicholas Allen will follow. Panelists will include Kapka Kassabova, Garret Carr, Dónal Hassett and Suchitra Vijayan. Register for this event here

This introduction will be followed by events focused on readings of individual authors, and the series will close with a conversation with four contemporary writers on their work and the border.

Wednesday 20 October, 7pm
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Neil Hegarty and Elizabeth Mannion in conversation about Andrea Carter's Death at Whitewater Church: An Inishowen Mystery. Moderated by Liam McIlvanney.

Wednesday 17 November, 7pm
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Eoin Flannery and Eoin McNamee in conversation about Eugene McCabe's Death and Nightingales. Moderated by Stefanie Lehner.

Wednesday 19 January 2022, 7pm
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Alison Garden and Dawn Sherrat-Bado in conversation about Sue Divin's Guard Your Heart. Moderated by Freya McClements.

Wednesday, 16 February 2022, 7PM
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Stephen O’Neill and Maria Johnston in conversation about Seamus Heaney's Opened Ground: Poems 1966-1996. Moderated by Gail McConnell.

Wednesday, 23 March 2022, 7PM
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This concluding event, New Horizons: A Conversation, will be moderated by Martin Doyle. Panelists will include: James Patterson; Jill Crawford; Nidhi Zak/Aria Eipe; and Luke Cassidy.


Border Literatures Panellists  Border Literatures About the Panellists.pdf (0.63 MB, Adobe PDF)

Border Literatures FAQ


Looking for some music to go with your readings? The contributors are curating a Spotify playlist to accompany the series

Main Building, Reading Room.
Main Building, Reading Room.
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