Research Project: Us and Them: Discourses on Foreignness by Irish and Galician Women Writers (1980-2007) (MICINN FFI2009-08475/FILO)

PI: Manuela Palacios González

Members: Laura Lojo Rodríguez (USC); María Dolores Gómez Penas (USC); Burghard Baltrusch (UVIGO); María Xesús Nogueira Pereira; Luz Mar González Arias (UNIOVI); Olivia Rodríguez González; Mª Xesús Lama (UB); José Francisco Fernández Sánchez (UAL); Helena Miguélez Carballeira (U. Bangor, Wales, UK); Borbála Faragó (University College Dublin)

Period: 2010-2012

Funding Entity: Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation and the ERDF

Ireland and Galicia have been subject to important migratory flows, mostly emigration but also, in the last two decades, immigration. Past exile due to hostile political conditions and present-day travel practices have also favoured the encounter with the Other, the foreigner. However, reaching out toward the Other has been rendered problematic in communities where colonialist and nationalist discourses have had contesting and contested views on difference.

We introduce the gender variable in this debate because women have often been constructed as subaltern citizens and are reputedly in a good position to understand disaffection with normative identities. Nonetheless, contemporary Feminism faces one of its main challenges in how to adequately respond to the claims of Multiculturalism.

On the basis of the social and cultural bonds between Ireland and Galicia, and of the unprecedented emergence of women writers in both communities since the 1980s, the aim of this project is to assess how their contemporary literature written by women constructs foreignness and produces a social critique of cultural difference. This project seeks to deepen the understanding of our protean, hybrid and multicultural societies.