In the early 20th century, publicly staged productions of historical events became increasingly popular – and increasingly grand – in Ireland. The pageants, not unlike the opening ceremonies of today’s Olympic Games, mobilized huge numbers of citizens in elaborate presentations that offered the Irish a sense of their own past.
University of Missouri-Kansas City professor Joan FitzPatrick Dean examines these spectacles in a discussion of her new book, All Dressed Up: Modern Irish Historical Pageantry, on Tuesday, November 18, 2014, at 6:30 p.m. at the Plaza Branch, 4801 Main St.
Dean’s research on the Irish pageants uncovered scripts, program covers, and detailed designs for costumes, all conveying the grandeur of the events. Tracing the phenomenon through the past century, she presents a nation forging an identity by reimagining its past.
The Curators Professor of English at UMKC, Dean has taught at the university since 1975. Among her other books is Riot and Great Anger: Stage Censorship in Twentieth-Century Ireland.
Admission to her presentation is free. A 6 p.m. reception precedes this event. RSVP at kclibrary.org or call 816.701.3407.