Eichhorn-Mulligan (Amy C.)

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  • (agents)
Mulligan, Amy C., A landscape of words: Ireland, Britain and the poetics of space, 700–1250, Manchester Medieval Literature and Culture, Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2019.  
Contents: Introduction; 1. Holy islands: transformative landscapes and the origins of an Irish spatial poetics; 2. Place-making heroes and the storying of Ireland's vernacular landscape; 3. A versified Ireland: the Dindshenchas Érenn and a national poetics of space; 4. National pilgrims: travelling a sanctified landscape with Saint Patrick; 5. English topographies of Ireland's conquest and conversion; Conclusion; Index.

Living on an island at the edge of the known world, the medieval Irish were in a unique position to examine the spaces of the North Atlantic region and contemplate how geography can shape a people. This book is the first full-length study of medieval Irish topographical writing. It situates the theories and poetics of Irish place - developed over six centuries in response to a variety of political, cultural, religious and economic changes - in the bigger theoretical picture of studies of space, landscape, environmental writing and postcolonial identity construction. Presenting focused studies of important literary texts by authors from Ireland and Britain, it shows how these discourses influenced European conceptions of place and identity, as well as understandings of how to write the world.

Mulligan, Amy C., “Moses, Taliesin, and the Welsh chosen people: Elis Gruffydd’s construction of a biblical, British past for Reformation Wales”, Studies in Philology 113:4 (Fall, 2016): 765–796.
Mulligan, Amy C., “Playing for power: Macha Mongrúad’s sovereign performance”, in: Sarah Sheehan, and Ann Dooley (eds), Constructing gender in medieval Ireland, New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013. 75–94.
Mulligan, Amy C., “‘The satire of the poet is a pregnancy’: pregnant poets, body metaphors, and cultural production in medieval Ireland”, Journal of English and Germanic Philology 108:4 (October, 2009): 481–505.
Eichhorn-Mulligan, Amy C., “The anatomy of power and the miracle of kingship: the female body of sovereignty in a medieval Irish kingship tale”, Speculum 81:4 (October, 2006): 1014–1054.  
“I am the Sovereignty” (“Misi in Flaithius”), states a woman boldly as her body is transformed from loathliness to loveliness in Echtra mac nEchach Muigmedóin (The Adventures of the Sons of Eochaid Muigmedóin), an eleventh-century Middle Irish prose narrative that intertwines sex, power, gender, and, it will be argued in this essay, the disease of leprosy. This woman is one version of the widely attested caillech, the “sovereignty figure” or “loathly lady” who embodies the rule of Ireland and who ultimately demonstrates that she is not just an object to be coveted or scorned. Rather, “Sovereignty,” as she frequently names herself, actively tests kingly candidates (often requiring them to kiss her or engage in sexual intercourse), endows her preferred male with power, disperses shrewd, politically enabling advice, and in some narratives even returns to reclaim power or “sovereignty” from an unfit king.
(source: Article abstract)
Eichhorn-Mulligan, Amy C., “Togail bruidne Da Derga and the politics of anatomy”, Cambrian Medieval Celtic Studies 49 (Summer, 2005): 1–19.


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Dennis Groenewegen
Page created
March 2018