NWCDTP funded PhD student Katie Barnes won best paper on her panel at Salford’s postgraduate research conference (SPARC) for her paper entitled “The artful Eighth: exploring performance art as an alternate form of memoir in response to Repeal the Eighth”. The paper considers how memoir and the artistic form intertwine as a response to trauma, but also how performance art can be used to illicit an emotional reaction from the audience in response to a political message. Exploring work created by a performance artist in response to personal testimony, the paper analyses how performance art can be utilised as a response to spoken word testimony, exploring the effect of the artistic female body on how testimony is perceived when it is presented visually.
This summer, Katie also had a paper accepted for ‘English: Shared Futures’ on how her PhD will explore the dismantling of the stereotypical mother figure through contemporary Irish literature. It considers how her research will inform the response to her research questions and outlines the theoretical framework of the project in order to represent how she intends to develop her thesis over the next two years.
She will also present a paper at the International Association for the Study of Irish Literatures (IASIL) in Limerick entitled “‘Mothers are more than bodies’: Ireland’s relationship with motherhood in Claire Lynch’s small: on motherhoods (2021)”. This paper considers the complex position of Lynch as second-generation member of the Irish diaspora and how this has affected her perception of motherhood. Sophie Anders, a third year PhD student, will also present at the conference, exploring her doctoral research into gender and conflict in Derry Girls.