First editions and rare copies of works of many of the giants of Irish literature will now be more accessible to historians and students, thanks to the generosity of the Irish American Cultural Institute.
The institute has donated its library of nearly 4,000 books of Irish interest to Ireland’s Great Hunger Institute at Quinnipiac University, Dr. Peter Halas, chairman of the Irish American Cultural Institute, and Christine Kinealy, director of Ireland's Great Hunger Institute, announced in a joint statement.
The library, with notable valuable editions that have been collected over 50 years, includes the works of many of the greats of Irish literature, including works by Lady Gregory, W.B. Yeats, J.M. Synge, James Joyce, George Bernard Shaw and Sean O’Casey. Also included in the collection is a Dublin newspaper, “The Weekly Irish Times,” which was published in 1916 in the immediate aftermath of the Easter Rising, which proved to be a pivotal event in the winning of Irish independence.
The library also includes a complete 50-year collection of ‘Eire-Ireland,’ the IACI published leading Irish studies academic journal, with ongoing semiannual editions that will continue to be added to the collection.
“The Irish American Cultural Institute, board members, director, chapters and members are pleased and excited to join Quinnipiac University and The Great Hunger Institute in a mission to promote and appreciate Irish history with the donation of our library,” Halas said.
Kinealy, who also is a history professor at Quinnipiac, said, “The books in the IACI library are an excellent resource for teaching and for scholarship. We are delighted that the Irish American Cultural Institute has chosen the Great Hunger Institute to act as stewards of its wonderful collection. We are working with the staff in the Arnold Bernhard Library at Quinnipiac to make the books available to students and researchers. We see this donation as the beginning of a wonderful partnership between the two institutes.”
Robert Smart, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Quinnipiac, said, “The addition of the IACI collection to Ireland’s Great Hunger Institute and the Arnold Bernhard Library at Quinnipiac is a major step toward making the institute a powerful engine for student scholarship on campus. Students now have access to a wide and deep catalog of texts on Irish literature, history, culture and society—many of them original editions—which can become the portal to a rich understanding of Irish studies. The collection will also have much value for external scholars who will no doubt see these additions to our library holdings as an indication of the centrality of Quinnipiac University in the expanding field of Irish studies." Learn More