Booked Out: Online: Normal Women 2: Irish Women's Writing with Eva Kenny

Booked Out: Online: Normal Women 2: Irish Women's Writing with Eva Kenny

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Starts: Thurs 4 Mar 2021
Time: 6.30 pm - 8.30 pm
Duration: 6 weeks
Cost: €165/€150 members

Course Level: Emerging

All Irish Writers Centre remote courses take place on Irish Standard Time (GMT+1)

Course Summary:

Following the booked-out online course Normal Women last autumn, Normal Women 2 will examine the literary predecessors of Ireland's contemporary female writers. Participants will read a book, story or book section every week, with works by Kate O'Brien, Edna O'Brien, Mary Lavin, Bernadette Devlin-McAliskey, Nuala O'Faolain and Maeve Brennan. Censored, shamed and ridiculed in Ireland for their descriptions of religion, sexuality and/or the nascent State, these writers often traveled, taught abroad in Spain or lived and worked in London or New York while continuing to write about Ireland, love, society and politics.  

Reading a short section of one book every week, participants will explore how and why these writers construct, examine, question or challenge the idea of what it meant to be an Irish woman in the mid-twentieth century. Through their texts we will ask how Ireland has changed since their publication and how it has stayed the same. Your focus on the texts will provide prompts for your own writing, with professional feedback from the tutor and peer discussion every week.

Course Outline:

Every week for six weeks you will meet online where you will discuss one of the course texts. Participants will prepare a short piece of writing in response to the text in question every two weeks; these can be fictional, critical, personal, creative or theoretical and will be workshopped in the class, guided by the tutor, and discussed in relation to the text and course theme by the group.

Course Outcomes:

Participants will be familiar with a selection of key works of twentieth-century Irish women's writing, with a broad understanding of the main themes of the books in question. The wide disciplinary scope will allow writers to think and talk across many forms, whether fiction, the essay, autobiography, or sociological memoir, providing them with a context for their own emerging writing practice.

Eva Kenny
is a writer based in Dublin. Her fiction, criticism and essays have been published in The Stinging Fly, The Irish Times, Artforum, Frieze, the LA Review of Books, the Dublin Review of Books, IMMA magazine, Flash Art, Kaleidoscope, Brand-New-Life and Persona, amongst others. She holds a doctorate in literature from Princeton University and is at work on a debut novel.

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