Brian Ó Conchubhair

Brian Ó Conchubhair is an Associate Professor of Irish Language and Literature at the University of Notre Dame and a fellow of the Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies and the Kellogg Institute for International Studies.

He has served as Director of the Center for the Study of Languages & Cultures (2013-2020); Executive Director of the IRISH Seminar (2011-2013), and President of the American Conference for Irish Studies (2015-2017). He has been a Visiting Professor at Université Sorbonne Nouvelle-Paris 3, the University of Notre Dame, Dhaka, (Bangladesh), and Charles University (Prague.)  

Professor Ó Conchubhair’s writings include an award-winning monograph on the intellectual history of the Irish Revival entitled Fin de Siècle na Gaeilge: Darwin, An Athbheochan agus Smaointeoireacht na hEorpa (The Irish Fin de Siècle: Darwin, the Revival and European Thought).  That book analyzed the European context for the 19th-century Irish language and cultural revival and traced the impact and influence of the writings of Charles Darwin, Max Nordau, Friedrich Max Müller and theories of race extermination, cultural decline, degeneration and cultural nationalism as they shaped and sculpted Irish debates on dialects, orthography, fonts, grammar, cultural criticism, and literary production.

Other edited publications include: Gearrscéalta Ár Linne (2006, 2010, 2013); WHY IRISH? Irish Language and Literature in Academia (2008); Twisted Truths (2011); Darkness: Liam O’Flaherty’s Tragedy (2013); Lost in Connemara: Stories from the Irish (2014); Rogha Scéalta le Pádraic Breathnach 1974-2014 (2014) and (with Jefferson Holdridge) After Ireland: Essays on Contemporary Irish Poetry (Wake Forest University Press, 2017); My American Journey: Douglas Hyde (2019); and Cathair na Gaillimhe: Díolaim Cathrach (2020).  

Recent publications include chapters in The Cambridge History of Ireland, The Oxford History of Ireland, The Oxford History of the Irish Book, The Oxford Handbook of Modern Irish Theatre and The Oxford Handbook of Modern Irish Fiction. Other articles appear in The Irish University Review, Éigse, Éire-Ireland, Études Irlandaises, Review of Contemporary Fiction, American Journal of Irish Studies, New Hibernian Review, Irisleabhar Mhá Nuad, Yearbook of English Studies, Modernist Cultures, Comhar, Proceedings of the Harvard Celtic Colloquium, Léachtaí Cholm Cille and Journal of Historical Sociology and Sport in History. He is currently completing a full-length biography of Flann O’Brien/Myles na Gopaleen.

Recent courses include “The Irish Short Story,” “Irish Modernism,” “Flann O’Brien’s Ireland”, “Máirtín O Cadhain’s Cré na Cille,” “The Novel and Autobiography in Irish,” “Social Justice: The Speeches of Michael D. Higgins,” “Irish Poetry: 5th to 21st Century,” and “The Irish Language in the USA.” As part of the Notre Dame/Holy Cross program, he also teaches courses in Irish Studies at the Westville Correctional Facility

In collaboration with Notre Dame's Office of Community Engagement, Professor Ó Conchubhair initiated a successful program to bring Fulbright FLTAs to South Bend elementary, middle and high schools to teach students a variety of languages and cultures. He also oversees an annual program, funded by the Keough-Naughton Institute, to bring Irish teachers from Mary Immaculate College, Limerick, to South Bend schools. They teach and exchange best practices with their local counterparts while also engaging with ND undergrads on contemporary topics in Irish culture. He led a three year program to develop and expand language teaching and pedagogy at the University of Notre Dame, Bangladesh that led to the creation of a language center at this Holy Cross university in Dhaka, Bangladesh.