Dr Marc Scully
Telephone: +44 (0)116 252 2857
Office: Attenborough 703
In the Immigration and Indigenism in popular historical discourse project, I examine the discursive construction of English and British national identities through the prism of diaspora. In tracing how this is done, there is a need to avoid prior assumptions that the 'indigenous' and 'immigrants' are two discrete categories to which individuals can be allocated. Rather, discourses of indigenism and immigration may serve to position individual subjects as either internal or external to the 'imagined community' of the nation, but can also be used by them in negotiating their own identities, and in reshaping and rearticulating what 'Britishness' constitutes.
This project will have a particular focus on how a collective past is imagined in contemporary society and, from a social psychological perspective, how the personal and familial narratives that individuals have of their own past, are situated within a wider sense of a shared history. The project will also examine how contemporary identities are constructed on a collective basis through the memorialisation of the nation, on both an official and an unofficial basis. This project will also work alongside those being conducted by other members of the Impact of Diasporas team, in considering how historical discourses of migration in the more distant past may shape contemporary identities.
I envisage that this project will consist of three major case studies. Preliminary fieldwork on the first case study, which examines identification with the Viking past in Northern England, was carried out in early 2012. In particular, we are interested in how genetic data is used alongside genealogical data by individuals to create a narrative of Viking descent, and what implications this has for local, national and transnational identity.
Background, previous work and other research interests:
In terms of professional background, I am a social psychologist in the discursive tradition . I graduated from University College Cork with a BA in Applied Psychology in 2003, before going on to complete a MSc in Applied Social Psychology at the University of Bath in 2004, a Higher Diploma in Social Policy at UCC in 2006, and finally a PhD with the Open University in 2010, under the supervision of Drs. Gail Lewis and Jovan Byford.
My primary research interest is in the construction and negotiation of local and national identities within the framework of migration, transnationalism and diaspora. My PhD research examined the construction of 'authentic' identities among the Irish diaspora in England, and illuminated some of the discursive strategies used by individuals to position themselves and others as either 'authentically' or 'inauthentically' Irish. I continue to write and publish from this work, and am currently further exploring the affective nature of how 'authenticity' is felt, particular in the context of collective participation and celebration. I was also the winner of the 2011 ASEN/Dominique Jacquin-Berdal prize for my paper: “The tyranny of transnational discourse: 'Authenticity' and Irish diasporic identity in Ireland and England.”
Within the University of Leicester, I am the co-convenor, alongside Dr. Leah Bassel of the Department of Sociology of the Leicester Migration Network.
Publications / Written Work:
Scully, Marc. (2012). Local Spaces, Liminality and Authenticity: The Case of the Irish Diaspora in England. In R. Kenedy, M. Greenfields, J. Rollins & S. P. Gabriel (Eds.), Diasporic Identities and Spaces Between (pp. 117-146). Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press.
Scully, M. (2012) "Whose Day Is It Anyway? St. Patrick's Day as a Contested Performance of National and Diasporic Irishness." Studies in Ethnicity and Nationalism, 12(1), 118-135
Scully, M. (2012) "The tyranny of transnational discourse: 'authenticity' and Irish diasporic identity in Ireland and England'. Nations & Nationalism, 18, 2, 191-209.
Scully, M. (2010) "Discourses of authenticity and national identity among the Irish diaspora in England". Phd Thesis, The Open University, 2010. Available at http://oro.open.ac.uk/25474/
Scully, M. (2009) "Local Identification and Authenticity among the Irish Diaspora in England." In L. De Pretto, G. Macri & C. Wong (Eds.), Diasporas: Revisiting & Discovering (pp. 225-244). Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press. Available online.
Scully, M. (2009) "'Plastic and Proud'? Discourses of Authenticity among the Second-Generation Irish in England." Psychology & Society, 2(2), 124-135. Available online.
Recent Conference Papers:
"Remediating Viking origins: the use of genetic evidence in resourcing narratives of British national identity" (with Prof. Steve Brown) at the Towards a Common Past? Conflicting Memories in Contemporary Europe conference held at Lund University, 16th May, 2012.
"'But you were one of the lucky ones because you fell in love with a woman' - narratives of domesticity, security and authenticity among the Irish diaspora in England" at the New Perspectives on Women and the Irish Diaspora conference held at Bath Spa University, 24th March, 2012.
“How much do you have to know about Ireland to be Irish? Transnational knowledge, diasporic claims, and the Irish in England” at the Diaspora Strategies: Encouragement, Evolution & Engagement conference held at University College Dublin, 9th September, 2011.
“County identity, diasporic identity and ‘authenticity’ among the Irish in England” at the EFACIS/BAIS Joint Conference held at the University of Salford, 3rd September, 2011.
“It’s not as if I’m a ‘fake’ Irish person” – authenticity and the Irish in England.” at the Irish in Britain Seminar Series held at London Metropolitan University, 24th May, 2011, and again at the Institute of Irish Studies Seminar Series held at Queen's University Belfast, 5th March, 2012.
“In the National Interest?: transnational and diasporic Irish identities and the emigrant voting rights debate.” at the 2nd Conference on Social Psychology in Ireland held at the University of Limerick, 28th April, 2011.
“’Is this how we advertise what being Irish is?’St. Patrick’s Day as a contested performance of national and diasporic Irishness” at the ‘Forging the Nation’ ASEN conference held at the London School of Economics, 6th April, 2011.
“Subjectivities and alternatives in researching Irish identity in England: choices and overflows” at the Studying the Psychosocial conference held at the Open University, 4th February, 2011.