Breandán Ó Buachalla Memorial Lecture

The ITS/NLI Breandán Ó Buachalla Memorial Lecture is held in the National Library of Ireland every March.

Breandán Ó Buachalla (1936-2010) was a long-time member of the ITS Council and an authority on Gaelic poetry.



2020 Breandán Ó Buachalla Memorial Lecture

'Polishing diamonds: How modern Irish poetry came to gleam'

Irish Texts Society Breandán Ó Buachalla Lecture at the National Library of Ireland
This lecture is postponed and will be rescheduled

An tOllamh Máire Ní Annracháin (Prof. Emerita, UCD)

The work of the ITS has borne fruit in many ways. At the time of the Irish revival the written literary canon was almost entirely confined to manuscripts. Its gradual publication by the ITS and others has allowed modern poets to delve deeply into what Pearse called Irish literature's own past, which would be, he advocated, an indispensable resource for the creation of a modern literature.
And so it came to pass. It is difficult to imagine a fruitful reading of swathes of post-Revival literature in Irish without an understanding of its traditional roots in the earlier written and oral literature. Far from exhibiting the anxiety of influence, modern poets have approached the earlier literature in a spirit of deep respect and fearless innovation.
This lecture will consider aspects of the creative re-imagining in modern poetry of traditional ideas and images. It will pay tribute to the subtle and insightful body of work produced by recent generations, who are worthy inheritors of a literature they have, in their turn, transformed.



2019: Cathal Goan (formerly RTÉ and Teilifís na Gaeilge TG4) ‘Collecting the Fragments: Breandán Ó Buachalla in Cape Clear (1959-2009)’
2018: Dr Bernadette Cunningham (Library, Royal Irish Academy) ‘Pilgrims and poets in fifteenth-century Gaelic Ireland’
2014: Dr Nollaig Ó Muraíle (Roinn na Gaeilge, NUI Galway) ‘The Irish genealogies – Irish history's poor relation?’
2013: Bernard O’Donoghue (Oxford) ‘Lyrics in two languages: the short Irish poem in the twentieth century’

2012: Professor Pádraig Ó Riain (UCC) ‘Forty years a-growing: the Dictionary of Irish Saints’

2011: Dr John Carey (UCC)‘The Wanderings of the Battle of Moytirra’