Tuesday 23 September 2014

Catherine Swift - Speaker Profile

Name - Dr Catherine Swift

Qualifications - M.Phil (Dunelm). D.Phil (Oxon), M.Phil (Dublin)

Day Job - Dr Swift is Director of Irish Studies in Mary Immaculate College, University of Limerick. She undertook an MPhil. in Archaeology on the parallels between early Irish and Scottish church sites at the University of Durham; she received a second MPhil. in Old-Irish Language and Culture from Trinity College Dublin. Her DPhil. at Oxford examined the history of the cult of St Patrick. She has taught in many universities, including University College Dublin, Trinity College Dublin, The University of Liverpool, NUI Maynooth, NUI Galway, and The University of Melbourne. She served ten years as organising Secretary of the Irish Conference of Mediaevalists, and gives an annual Summer School in Old Irish in Limerick.

What are your research interests?
Archaeology, History and Languages (Old Irish/Latin) of pre-Norman Ireland – ogam stones, cults of St Patrick, St Brigit, St Columcille and local saints, ecclesiastical settlement, kings of Tara, Hiberno-Viking culture, high-medieval ship-building.

So what will you be talking about?
The internet is revolutionising academic research, breaking down many pre-existing barriers between university life and the wider world. Nowhere is this more true than in the field of genetic genealogy and it is local geographic and surname projects, and associated websites, run by citizen scientists, as well as university papers which are forcing the pace of change. This work is characterised by growing expertise in genetics and family history but the key research challenge for medieval historians is to investigate the origin and development of surnames in Ireland and Western Europe. This paper investigates the processes of surname adoption through the pivotal figure of Brian Boru.

What DNA tests will be discussed?

Where can people get more information about you or your topic?

Academic papers can be accessed via https://limerick.academia.edu/catherineswift

IRCHSS/AHRC 2009-2011 – Genes of the Gall Goídel (principal Irish investigator partnering with Dr Christina Lee, University of Nottingham – see www.vikingage.mic.ul.ie)

IRCHSS New Ideas 2012: Linn na nGéinte Éireannacha
(in partnership with Dr Turi King, University of Leicester)

These lectures are sponsored by FamilyTreeDNA and organised by volunteers from ISOGG (International Society of Genetic Genealogy).

You can watch a video of the presentation by simply clicking on the image below. To watch it in Full Screen, click on the "square" icon in the bottom right of the screen.

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