Irish poet Desmond Egan to read and discuss his work March 28

Egan Desmond
Desmond Egan

Feb. 21, 2013 - Desmond Egan, founder and artistic director of the Gerard Manley Hopkins International Festival, will read his poetry, including the acclaimed collection "Famine," at Ireland's Great Hunger Museum, 3011 Whitney Avenue, at 5 p.m. on Thursday, March 28. Following the reading, Egan will answer questions from the audience.

Egan, a full-time writer who lives near Newbridge in County Kildare, has written a wide range of poetry and prose publications as well as translations and books of prose. His poem, "Peace," was translated into 35 languages as part of the "Peace for the Millennium" celebration.

To date, Egan has published 23 poetry collections; two of prose and two translations of Greek plays. Collections of his poetry have appeared in book form in France, Germany, Japan, China, Italy, Greece, the Netherlands, Poland, Luxembourg, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Russia and Bulgaria.

Two documentary films on Egan's poetry, "Desmond Egan: Through the Eyes of a Poet," and "Dual-Language Multimedia Presentation DESpectrum," have been produced.

Egan has won numerous awards for his poetry during his career, including the Macedonian Poetry Prize, the Bologna Literary Award, The Farrell Prize, The Chicago Haymarket Literary Award and National Poetry Foundation of USA Award.

This event, which is sponsored by the English Department in the College of Arts and Sciences and Academic Affairs at Quinnipiac, is free and open to the public. Reservations are required. Please call 203-582-6500.

Ireland's Great Hunger Museum is home to the world's largest collection of visual art, artifacts and printed materials relating to the Irish Famine. The museum preserves, builds and presents its art collection in order to stimulate reflection, inspire imagination and advance awareness of Ireland's Great Hunger and its long aftermath on both sides of the Atlantic.

The collection focuses on the famine years from 1845-52, when blight destroyed virtually all of Ireland's potato crops for consecutive years. The crop destruction, coupled with British governmental indifference to the plight of the Irish, who at the time were part of the United Kingdom, resulted in the deaths of more than 1 million Irish men, women and children and the emigration of more than 2 million to nations around the world. This tragedy occurred even though there was more than adequate food in the country to feed its starving populace. Exports of food and livestock from Ireland actually increased during the years of the Great Hunger.

Works by noted contemporary Irish artists are featured at the museum including internationally known sculptors John Behan, Rowan Gillespie and Eamonn O'Doherty; as well as contemporary visual artists, Robert Ballagh, Alanna O'Kelly Brian Maguire and Hughie O'Donoghue. Featured paintings include several important 19th and 20th‐century works by artists such as James Brenan, Daniel MacDonald, James Arthur O'Connor and Jack B. Yeats.

The museum is open Wednesdays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursdays 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sundays 1-5 p.m.