An Historian of What, You Say?

As an historian, I suppose I am a bit all over the place. My main interest lays in early medieval Ireland, particularly looking at the status of literature. My MA thesis looked at the role of children in legal texts. I also enjoy working with early Irish mythology, though I will admit that my Old Irish is non-existent as I only slogged through one term of it. I am currently making my way through Harrius Potter to keep up with my Latin, so that is helping a bit!

My undergrad thesis looked at Catholic Emancipation, and I have written on the Irish in Canada and the U.S. (sensing a theme yet?). I don’t particularly love modern history, but you have to work within the course boundaries, right? It was not my favourite but at least I have a broad range of exposure. I also worked on early modern sources in our archives, which was completely fascinating. I have quite a few friends who work in archives, and while I think what they do is incredibly important, I am specifically drawn to the rare book aspect of archives. I think it is fascinating to know that a book has survived for 500+ years for us to read now.

I am one of those rare historians who enjoys reading about historiography and historiographical trends. I recently read the History Manifesto (linked about the bottom), and while it was interesting, it was frustrating as Guldi and Armitage only discussed the trends in modern historiography. I do try to be well-read but sometimes I give up on modern pieces as they aren’t terribly applicable to my own work after a point.

In no particular order or preference, some of my favourite academic works:

Johnston, Elva. Literacy and Identity in Early Medieval Ireland. Boydell and Brewer: Woodbridge, 2013.

Charles-Edwards, Thomas. Early Christian Ireland. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, 2000.

Bowler, Gerry. Santa Clause: A Biography. McClelland & Stewart: Toronto, 2005.

Breathnach, Edel, ed. The Kingship and Landscape of Tara. Dublin: Four Courts, 2005.

I will add more to this list as the blog continues, but they jump out at me!

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