Irish Studies Würzburg

Guest Lecture: Dr. Joanne Cusack (Maynooth University), "Activism, Research & Musicianship: Women and Irish Traditional Music"

Datum: 29.05.2024, 16:00 - 18:00 Uhr
Ort: Hörsaal III, Residenz

As part of the seminar "Applied Ethnomusicology", Dr. Joanne Cusack (Maynooth University) will give a lecture on "Activism, Research, and Musicianship: Women and Irish Traditional Music"

This talk addresses the important topic of women and Irish traditional music. Drawing on her forthcoming monograph and PhD research conducted over five years, Cusack discusses key findings pertaining to the experiences of women performing on the recreational and commercial platforms of Irish traditional music and dance. Through the lens of applied ethnomusicology, she interrogates the complexities of her positionality as a researcher, musician, and feminist activist with the volunteer grassroots organisation, FairPlé, and examines the impact this has had on her overall research project. Cusack concludes by discussing the need for further studies that are shaped, informed by, and conducted with the goal of benefiting the people of the research.

Dr Joanne Cusack is a researcher, musician, and FairPlé activist. She is a first-class honours graduate of Dundalk Institute of Technology specialising in Irish traditional solo performance, and holds a Ph.D. in Musicology from Maynooth University. Her research interests include cultural/critical studies, identity studies, feminist activism, and performance. As an activist, Joanne has contributed to the creation of numerous policy and support documents, and has been invited to speak at several events including, most notably, before the Oireachtas Joint Committee to discuss a safe and respectful working environment for the arts in October 2021. Aside from this, Joanne has an active record as an Irish traditional musician having performed both nationally and internationally. Joanne currently coordinates and delivers undergraduate modules on performance, and gender and musicology for the Department of Music at Maynooth University.


This lecture is organized by the chair of Ethnomusicology. For more information, please contact Dr. Felix Morgenstern (