Notre Dame hosts two NEH summer seminars

Author: Arts and Letters


The University of Notre Dame is hosting two National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) summer seminars in which college and university professors with related interests are able to conduct scholarly research under the direction of an expert.

A five-week seminar titled “Anglo-Irish Identities, 1600-1800,” is underway through July 6 (Friday) in the Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies, and “The Middle East Between Rome and Persia: Early Christianity on the Path to Islam,” a six- week seminar, is continuing through July 27 (Friday).

“The NEH seminars are a wonderful service to college teachers, who will in turn have tremendous impact on large numbers of students,” said Mark Roche, Notre Dame’s I.A. O’Shaughnessy Dean of the College of Arts and Letters. “At the same time, they represent attractive opportunities for our most renowned faculty to think out loud with scholars who have similar interests, and they add luster to our standing as a research university.”

“Anglo-Irish Identities,” under the direction of Christopher Fox, director of the Keough-Naughton Institute and professor of English, is exploring the complex and contested cultural, political and ideological identities of the group variously known as Anglo-Irish, English in Ireland and Protestant Ascendancy.

Fifteen scholars from 13 states are examining the question of identity and difference in writers who have dominated the teaching and understanding of Irish history and literature of this critical period, including Edmund Spenser, William Molyneux, Jonathan Swift, George Berkeley, Maria Edgeworth and Edmund Burke.

Under the direction of Joseph P. Amar, professor of Arabic and Syriac, and Robin Darling Young, associate professor of theology, “The Middle East Between Rome and Persia” is studying the primary sources, both documentary and archaeological, and scholarly reconstructions that will allow 15 participants to reconsider the cultural, linguistic and religious history of the marchlands of the near east during late antiquity. Along with the Christian communities of the region, it also will survey the interrelations among the other religious communities that made possible the emergence of Islam.

The National Endowment for the Humanities is an independent grant-making agency of the federal government that supports the humanities. Each year the NEH’s Division of Education Programs offers teachers opportunities to study humanities topics in a variety of summer seminars and institutes.

Contacts: Christopher Fox, 574-631-3555, , and Joseph Amar,574-631-6276,

Originally published by Shannon Chapla at on June 27, 2007.