Two NUI Galway Academics Elected as Members of the Royal Irish Academy

Pictured, from left, Professor Pól Ó Dochartaigh, Register and Deputy President, NUI Galway; Paolo Bartoloni, Established Professor of Italian, NUI Galway; and Dr Alison Forrestal, Lecturer in History, NUI Galway. Photo by Johnny Bambury Photography
May 30 2019 Posted: 14:37 IST

Dr Alison Forrestal, Lecturer in History and Professor Paolo Bartoloni, Professor of Italian at NUI Galway, have been elected as Members of the Royal Irish Academy for their contribution to Humanities and Social Sciences, during a special admittance ceremony recently in Dublin.

Dr Forrestal and Professor Bartoloni are two of 27 new Members of the Royal Irish Academy elected for their exceptional contribution to the sciences, humanities and social sciences as well as to public service. New members joining the NUI Galway academics include Nobel Laureate John O’Keefe, Diarmaid Ferriter of UCD, and Olivia O’Leary of RTÉ.

Professor Peter Kennedy, President of the Royal Irish Academy, said: “These individuals have made exceptional contributions in their fields of endeavour. We are delighted to recognise their achievements.”

Dr Alison Forrestal is a leading authority on the history of early modern Christianity, and has particular expertise in the religious histories of France and Ireland. She has published three major monographs, edited two collections of essays, published many articles, and is academic leader of a Digital Humanities project on Vatican documents. Among her works is the ground-breaking Vincent de Paul, the Lazarist Mission, and French Catholic Reform, an acclaimed study of the charitable and missionary enterprises associated with Vincent de Paul, a driving force behind the Catholic Reformation and an enduring influence on Catholic socio-cultural norms and ideals.

Paolo Bartoloni is Established Professor of Italian at NUI Galway. Previously he taught in Italian and Comparative Literature at the University of Sydney where he was Founding Director of the program in International and Comparative Literary Studies. He is a leading cultural theorist who has made significant contributions to international scholarship in the areas of comparative literature, translation studies, contemporary philosophy and Italian cultural history. He is the author of four monographs, including the internationally acclaimed On the Cultures of Exile, Translation, and Writing, three edited collections and over 60 refereed articles in major international journals. His latest book Objects in Italian Life and Culture: Fiction, Migration and Artificiality covers a significant gap in ‘object theory’ with its new take on the relation between objects and humans.    

Congratulating Dr Forrestal and Professor Bartoloni on this honour, President of NUI Galway, Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh, said: “On behalf of colleagues at NUI Galway, I extend warmest congratulations to Alison and Paolo on their election to membership of the Royal Irish Academy.  This recognises the immense and continuing contribution which they make to their respective academic fields of history and Italian literature.  As educators, researchers and as academic leaders at NUI Galway, they demonstrate personal talent and commitment to the advancement of humanities and social sciences research, nationally and internationally.  I’m delighted to see their achievements so justly recognised by the Academy in this way.”

The Royal Irish Academy is Ireland’s leading body of experts in the sciences and humanities. The Academy has been honouring Ireland’s leading contributors to the world of learning since its establishment in 1785. Past Members have included Maria Edgeworth, a pioneer of the modern novel and Nobel laureates: WB Yeats; Ernest Walton, Erwin Schrödinger and Seamus Heaney.


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