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DkIT Researcher Selected as Featured Poet in US Newsletter

05 June 2024

Dundalk Institute of Technology researcher Dr Daithí Kearney, co-director of the Creative Arts Research Centre, has had a poem selected for the Spring newsletter of the Society for Ethnomusicology (SEM).

SEM is a U.S.-based organization with an international membership of over 1700 individuals dedicated to the study of all forms of music from diverse humanistic and social scientific perspectives. SEM Newsletter is a vehicle for the exchange of ideas, news, and information among the Society’s members. Each month, a poet whose work resonates with the community of researchers is featured.

There has been increased recognition for the role of Creative Ethnography and the use of poetry in understanding complex challenges in culture and society. Kearney’s poem ‘Watch the Feet’ is part of his ongoing research on Irish dance practice and, in particular, the work of Siamsa Tíre, the National Folk Theatre of Ireland.

Writing about the poem, Poetry Editor Sean Williams from Evergreen University said:

“In this poem, Irish scholar Daithí Kearney brings us into what it means to incorporate one’s own body even as one observes other bodies. Feeling the alignment of “embodied inheritance” goes well beyond sitting and watching; it offers a language beyond words that tells stories of deep connection.”

Kearney’s poetry has been published in a wide range of literary journals nationally and internationally including Paddler Press, Patchwork Folklore Journal, Martello and Field Guide. He will be included in the forthcoming issue of Drawn to the Light and his song lyrics and poems have also been published in Treoir, the journal of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann, which is disseminated to members worldwide.

In an academic context, Kearney has used poetry as method and means of communicating and sharing his research. His poems provide a foundation for a forthcoming article in the Irish Journal of Anthropology and a short film combining his poetry with archival photographs and video of himself performing will be included as part of the ‘Around the Fire’ event, being hosted by the Centre for Creative Ethnography at Queen’s University Belfast in May. Kearney’s colleague Dr Kayla Rush, who previously pioneered a website dedicated to ethnographic poetry, is co-convener of the event in Belfast, which includes a diverse range of international scholars who are sharing their research, practice and artistic endeavours.


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