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Ireland on Film: Identity and Representation: graded paper

Class at Faculty of Arts |


Graded paper requirement for FF MA students only.

Course Description:

The course will explore representations of Ireland and the Irish through film. One of the central aims will be to analyse the ways in which Ireland has been portrayed by filmmakers – as quaint and pastoral or conversely as a nation plagued by seemingly senseless violence – and to explore how more recently these trajectories are becoming more complicated. In particular, we will focus upon questions of authenticity and imagination, the texts and contexts of the films, while taking into account the background of current debates in Irish cultural and literary studies involving post-colonialism and post-modernism.

Students are expected to watch the assigned films in advance of the class.


Week 1 (14 Feb.) Introduction

Week 2 (21 Feb.) Ethnicity, Authenticity and Documentary: Man of Aran (Robert Flaherty, 1934)

Week 3 (28 Feb.) Ireland and the American Imagination: The Quiet Man (John Ford, 1952)

Week 4 (7 Mar.) America and the Irish Imagination: Brooklyn (John Crowley, 2015)

Week 5 (14 Mar.) Catholic Ireland’s Hidden Pasts: The Magdalene Sisters (Peter Mullan, 2002)

Week 6 (21 Mar.) The Troubles on Film: The Crying Game (Neil Jordan, 1992)

Week 7 (28 Mar.) The Troubles on Film: Bloody Sunday (Paul Greengrass, 2002)

Week 8 (4 Apr.) Dublin ‘Musicals’: The Commitments (Alan Parker, 1990), Once (John Carney, 2007)

Week 9 (11 Apr.) Celtic Tiger Ireland: Intermission (John Crowley, 2003)

Week 10 (18 Apr.) Celtic Tiger Ireland: Adam and Paul (Lenny Abrahamson, 2004)

Week 11 (25 Apr.) Ireland and Europe: In Bruges (Martin McDonagh, 2008)

ESSAY PROPOSALS DUE by 28 April at 18.00

Week 12 (2 May) Topic to be finalised

Week 13 (9 May) Conclusion

Grading Scheme

Attendance and Participation 20%

Presentation/Short response paper 20%

Proposal (10) + Final Essay (50) 60%

Study programmes