Fairfield University President Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J. to be Honored with Irish Cultural Award at the 2016 Fairfield County Irish Festival

Media Contact: Susan Cipollaro, scipollaro@fairfield.edu, 203-254-4000, ext. 2726

Fairfield University Irish Studies Faculty will present readings and music to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising.

FAIRFIELD, Conn. (June 13, 2016) — Fairfield University President Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J. will be presented with the “Irish Cultural Award” at the Fairfield County Irish Festival on Saturday, June 18, 2016. The inaugural presentation of the award will take place in the main tent on Fairfield University’s campus at 2:40 pm.

Dr. Nels Pearson, Director of Irish Studies at Fairfield University said, “We are delighted that Fr. von Arx is receiving the Irish Cultural Award in conjunction with Fairfield’s hosting of the Fairfield County Irish Festival. Fr. von Arx is a highly accomplished scholar of 19th Century British and Irish history, especially in terms of the complex intersections of religion and politics. He has also been instrumental in building alliances with Irish cultural organizations, bringing the annual Irish festival to Fairfield’s campus and supporting Fairfield University’s Irish Studies Program, which is gaining national and international recognition as it nears its twentieth anniversary.”

To mark the Festival’s 2016 theme of the 100th Anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising, Fairfield University faculty members who teach in the Irish Studies Program  will commemorate the event with a 30-minute presentation also on Saturday, June 18th  beginning at 3:45 pm. Dr. Nels Pearson, Director of Irish Studies at Fairfield, will present W.B. Yeats’ poem, Easter 1916; Dr. William Abbott, Department of History, will read The Proclamation of the Irish Republic; Dr. Marice Rose, Department of Visual and Performing Arts, will present Yeats’ Sixteen Dead Men; Professor Marion White, Co-director, will read an excerpt by Lady Augusta Gregory on the revolutionary leader Countess Markievicz, as well as a poem by Seamus Heaney, Requiem for the Croppies; and Professor John Feeney, who teaches the Irish Language, will sing an Irish lullaby Caisleán Óir.

Following the faculty presentation, author of the widely acclaimed 2009 historical novel Galway Bay, novelist Mary Pat Kelly will present a talk on her recently published sequel, Of Irish Blood. The novel’s title is a partial quote from the Irish nationalist and friend of Yeats, Maude Gonne.

For more information on the Fairfield County Irish Festival go to: http://irishfestival.org



Vol. 48, No. 140


Fairfield University is a Jesuit University, rooted in one of the world’s oldest intellectual and spiritual traditions. More than 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students from 36 states, 47 foreign countries, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico are enrolled in the University’s five schools. In the spirit of rigorous and sympathetic inquiry into all dimensions of human experience, Fairfield welcomes students from diverse backgrounds to share ideas and engage in open conversations. The University is located in the heart of a region where the future takes shape, on a stunning campus on the Connecticut coast just an hour from New York City.

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Posted on July 19, 2016

Vol. 48, No. 140

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