UCD recently announced its plans to enter into a partnership with the National Library of Ireland to create the Museum of Modern Literature (MoLI), to be located at the historic Newman House on St. Stephens Green.
Newman House was original location of UCD in the 20th Century before its relocation to its current location in Belfield. As of now the building has been used to host tours of but will be receiving major renovations for the opening of the museum, which planned for Spring 2019.
The museum will serve as a focal point for literature and literary figures in the heart of the capital. It is hoped that the museum will join other important tourist attractions such as the Book of Kells and become one of Irelands must see cultural attractions. UCD President Deeks said in they ‘expect this venture to become a major new tourist attraction and a must-see for fans of Joyce and Irish writing around the world.’
James Joyce, one of UCD’s most notable alumni, will act as inspiration for the new museum. An important literary figure, James Joyce attended UCD in the early 20th Century when it was located at Newman House. The museum will house many exhibits including one mapping the life and work of James Joyce through various media as well as his ‘Copy No. 1’ of Ulysses.
Deeks attended the launch event this month whereby the project, which was known as the Ulysses Centre, was formally renamed as MoLI. The name is based on the character of Molly Bloom in Ulysses. It was timed to coincide with the anniversary of Joyce’s birthday, and held in Iveagh House, home of the Department of Foreign Affairs.
The museum will also host many other exhibits dedicated to different writers and literary works. According to the MoLI website, it is hoped that this museum will help to inspire both ‘international and domestic visitors with a love of reading and writing.’ The museum will also serve as a focal point for contemporary Irish literature. It hopes to do through hosting temporary exhibitions and believes that this will allow the museum to continuously be ‘adapting to new developments and scholarship in the literary field.’ The projected is estimated to cost €10 million, with most of the money coming from donations by Fáilte Ireland, The Naughton Foundation, and private donors.
Jennifer Garrett – News Writer