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Magee Hosts Renowned Irish Writers

Three of Ireland’s most celebrated contemporary Irish language writers will give a unique insight into their work at the University of Ulster’s Magee campus today.

Over 200 A Level Irish students will have the opportunity to meet poets Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill and Gréagóir Ó Dúill and novelist Seámas Mac Annaidh as part of the event organised by the School of Irish Language and Literature.

The three writers will deliver intimate tutorials exploring the themes and inspiration behind their work, all of which are on the current CEA A2 Irish Literature syllabus.

The guest speakers will be supported by staff from the School of Irish Language and Literature who have expertise in the various genres to be discussed, including Dr Art Hughes and Dr Frank Sewell (poetry); Dr Fionntan de Brun (short stories); and Dr Malachy O Neill (Drama).

Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill is one of the most prominent poets writing in the Irish language today. Her poetry has been translated into English by Seamus Heaney, Medbh and Paul Muldoon.

Irish themes, including language, are central to her poetry and range from ancient myths to details on contemporary life.

Her first collection was published in 1981, and the translation, Selected Poems: Rogha Danta, appeared in 1986. Her works have since been translated into Italian, Japanese and Turkish.

Gréagóir Ó Dúill has published nine collections of poetry and was awarded first prize by Oireachtas for a new collection in 2010.

He has also published a literary biography of Samuel Ferguson and a collection of short stories as well as two influential anthologies.

Fermanagh-born novelist and University of Ulster alumni Seámas Mac Annaidh, has worked in many genres, in both the Irish and English languages, as well as in journalism, film and music, but he is perhaps best known for his renowned works of experimental fiction.

His novel Cuaifeach Mo Londubh Buí­ (1983), the first of a trilogy, is regarded as pioneering and has earned significant critical acclaim.

Head of the School of Irish Language and Literature, Malachy Ó Néill, said: “This is a tremendous event for the School of Irish Language and Literature.

“We welcome almost two hundred young Irish speakers to the Magee Campus and afford them the opportunity to meet and listen to some of the writers from their course of study and to some of our own academic staff.

“We endeavour to cater for the specific needs of A2 pupils and teachers as they prepare for forthcoming examinations and also provide a taste of what it's like to study Irish at university level. We are indebted to CCEA for their support for this event.”

The University of Ulster’s Irish Literature Day, which is sponsored by CEA, will take place from 9.30am – 3pm on Friday 12 April 2013 at the Magee campus.