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Marc Conner

Marc Conner >

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Roots of Irish Identity - Celts to Monks
Episode 1 of The Irish Identity
The Irish Renaissance in the early 20th century was a remarkable period for arts, literature, and culture--and it sprang out of the legendary history of the nation. To help us understand this pivotal period, Professor Conner traces the course of…
Gaelic Ireland’s Fall - Vikings to Cromwell
Episode 2 of The Irish Identity
It is impossible to understand Irish history without reflecting on its relationship with the English. Here, go back to the 1100s, when Ireland lacked a central king, and witness the Norman invasions that were the start of England's dominion over…
Ulysses: A Greek Epic in an Irish World
Episode 25 of The Irish Identity
From 1914 to 1921, while Ireland faced revolution at home, James Joyce was abroad, slowly laboring on his great masterpiece, Ulysses. In this first of three lectures about this famous epic and its relation to Irish history, Professor Conner provides…
Finnegans Wake - Joyce’s Final Epic
Episode 32 of The Irish Identity
Dive headfirst into the complex, confusing, circular dream world of Finnegans Wake, Joyce's final book. Professor Conner gives you a way into the work--which ostensibly tells the dream of a Dublin pub owner and family man--and you'll come away with…
Molly Bloom - Joyce’s Voice of Love
Episode 27 of The Irish Identity
Round out your study of Ulysses with a look at Molly Bloom, who gets the last word in the novel and recasts the day presented in the preceding 17 chapters. Her perspective tells us much about how Joyce viewed character…
Michael Collins and the War of Independence
Episode 23 of The Irish Identity
The years after the Easter Rising saw a dramatic fight for a free nation. Michael Collins led a guerilla war against the forces of British rule, which finally created a window for negotiations. The eventual treaty between Ireland and the…
Three Episodes from Ulysses
Episode 26 of The Irish Identity
Unpack the complexity of Ulysses by looking at three of its episodes: "Hades" (episode 6), "Nausicaa" (episode 13), and "Circe" (episode 15)--three of the most moving and compelling chapters in the novel. By studying these three episodes, you'll gain a…
The Dublin Lockout and World War I
Episode 18 of The Irish Identity
Shift your attention back to the political sphere where, after the defeat of Parnell's Home Rule Bill, rebellious organizers began pushing for reforms of their own. Dig into the events surrounding the Dublin lockout, including the Bloody Sunday massacre, and…
The Penal Laws and Protestant Ascendancy
Episode 3 of The Irish Identity
Continue your study of the Irish political context with an examination of the rise of William of Orange, who restored Protestantism to England and enacted severe penal codes that oppressed Irish Catholics and created the Protestant Ascendancy. See how writers…
The Irish Civil War
Episode 24 of The Irish Identity
After the controversial free-state treaty at the end of 1921, the country split into civil war, with republicans viewing the treaty as selling out their ideals. Trace the events of the yearlong civil war, including the tragic death of Michael…
James Joyce - Emerging Genius of Dublin
Episode 12 of The Irish Identity
James Joyce is perhaps the towering figure of both Modernism and 20th-century Irish literature. This first lecture on Joyce places him in the context of turn-of-the-century Dublin and his role as an artist in exile. Learn about the city as…
Life and Legacy of Lady Gregory
Episode 29 of The Irish Identity
Very few great artists were also great characters, but Lady Gregory was certainly outstanding on both counts. Reflect on her life and the tension she faced between her status among the Protestant Ascendancy and her love for the Irish peasantry.…
Daniel O’Connell and the Great Famine
Episode 5 of The Irish Identity
One of the most famous people in Ireland's struggle for independence is Daniel O'Connell, a 19th-century politician who led the charge for Catholic emancipation as well as the effort to repeal Britain's Act of Union. Learn about his activism, and…
Yeats as the Great 20th-Century Poet
Episode 22 of The Irish Identity
While Joyce was sending his fictional hero off to become a great artist, Ireland's great real-life poetic hero Yeats was making his own transition from a mystic and romantic dreamer to a modernist poet, with a little guidance from Ezra…
Seamus Heaney’s Poetry of Remembrance
Episode 36 of The Irish Identity
The work of Seamus Heaney, undoubtedly Ireland's best poet from the second half of the 20th century, provides a fitting end to this course. Born on a farm in 1939, he understood the world of the Irish Renaissance, as well…
Yeats - The Tower Poems and Beyond
Episode 30 of The Irish Identity
In his later years, Yeats created an enigmatic spiritual system, and his poetry continued to evolve. Take a tour of his later writing, including two books that became some of the most significant works of poetry in the 20th century--both…
Ireland at the Turn of the 19th Century
Episode 4 of The Irish Identity
Follow Irish history through the age of rebellions sweeping across Europe and America, and find out how figures such as Wolfe Tone founded the quest for Irish republicanism. Delve into the cultural expressions of the 18th and 19th centuries, when…
Blasket Island Storytellers
Episode 31 of The Irish Identity
Journey to the rural southwest corner of Ireland, where the Blasket Islands lie on the edge of the wide Atlantic. There, a series of writers flourished in parallel with the high Modernism of Yeats, Lady Gregory, and Joyce. Meet several…
W. B. Yeats and the Irish Renaissance
Episode 8 of The Irish Identity
If one person is at the heart of the Irish Revival, it is the great poet W. B. Yeats. In this first lecture about the bard, Professor Conner introduces you to the man and his quest for meaning in the…
Shaw and Wilde - Irish Wit, London Stage
Episode 7 of The Irish Identity
Irish playwrights faced a conundrum in the 19th century: they could write in Irish and remain relatively obscure, or they could find success by adopting English, the language of the conqueror. Examine how George Bernard Shaw and Oscar Wilde navigated…