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Her Other Language: workshop, panel discussion & readings

6. March 2020 @ 1:30 pm - 8:00 pm

Of Mouth* is pleased to announce the forthcoming publication of Her Other Language: Women Writers from the North of Ireland Address Abuse and Domestic Violence, in association with Arlen House and the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. Edited by Natasha Cuddington and Ruth Carr.

Her Other Language is an anthology of poems, stories and play extracts by women.  It was conceived as a project to raise the profile of the ongoing issue of domestic and sexual violence while also giving visibllity to women in our society, and women writers in particular. On a practical level, the profit of the sales of the book will go to Belfast and Lisburn Women’s Aid refuges.

To mark the launch, there will be a series of events on Friday 6th March, 2020 at Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich in Belfast.


Her Other Language: POET AS WITNESS
WORKSHOP with Annemarie Ní Churreáin
Friday 6th March 2020, 1.30pm – 4.00pm
Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich, 216 Falls Road, Belfast

How can a poet bear witness? In what ways can we work innovatively with history, perspective and sensitive material to craft a literary work? Using as a springboard the ideas of Lola Ridge who said: ‘write anything that burns you’, students will be encouraged to excavate real and imagined landscapes, identifying resonant themes and (re)discovering the transformative nature of the human voice on the page.

Workshop admission: £10. Places are very limited. Please register in advance at ofmouth@gmail.com. Participants are welcome to submit a short poem, by way of introduction, after receiving confirmation of enrolment.


Her Other Language: READING EVENT
Friday 6th March 2020, 5.00pm – 6.00pm
Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich, 216 Falls Road, Belfast

To celebrate the launch of Her Other Language, Of Mouth is hosting a reading from a gathering of the anthology’s many talented contributors.

Reading Event admission is FREE. Places are limited. Please register in advance at ofmouth@gmail.com.


Her Other Language: WRITING TRAUMA
PANEL DISCUSSION with Ruth Carr, Colette Ní Ghallchóir, Lorna Shaughnessy
& Deirdre Cartmill
Friday 6th March 2020, 6.00pm – 8.00pm
Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich, 216 Falls Road, Belfast

To mark the launch of Her Other Language, Of Mouth is hosting a panel discussion to explore writing as a resource for both personal recovery and social change. With questions and contributions from the floor.

Panel Discussion admission is FREE. Places are limited. Please do register in advance at ofmouth@gmail.com.


*Of Mouth is a small voluntary organisation which more usually organises poetry events and workshops. However the group has experience in editing (Donegal is a red door by Ann Zell,  The Female Line, ed Ruth Carr). There is a shared ethos between Her Other Language and The Female Line, an anthology of Northern Irish Writers published 35 years ago in which established and emerging writers appeared side by side. In this new anthology, the work of distinguished writers such as Lucy Caldwell, Leontia Flynn, Bernie McGill, Joan Newmann and Medbh McGuckian sit well alongside emerging and first time writers and survivors.

Funded by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Allstate, the project has met with an overwhelming response from women (there are 98 contributors), giving their work freely to speak out against domestic violence – which does not appear to be diminishing any time soon. As the introduction notes – ‘PSNI figures show that domestic abuse incidents recorded in 2018/19 rose 51% above the level recorded in 2004/05 when police records began’.

In her foreword Monica McWilliams warns: ‘What you are about to read is both joyful and painful. Fear and tension jump out from the pages.’ This is certainly true.  It is quite remarkable how pieces interconnect, bringing to light the insidious grip that an underlying cultural misogyny can exert. And yet there is hope:

On the precipice of Brexit, from this contested locale, this book offers the hope of solidarity across declaimed generation, class, gender, language and ethnicity. From here, these writers speak in a fullness beyond omission, erasure and redaction, very much their mending selves.

What began as a project to bear witness to violence against women, has expanded to articulate the many paths from harm into the freedom of imaginative capability. In this anthology language is the key currency, a remarkable resource.


Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich
216 Falls Road
Belfast, BT12 6AH United Kingdom
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028 9096 4180
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