Carrie Gates | February 10, 2017
The last Irish residents of Inishark left their coastal island homes in 1960, leaving behind an island eight miles into the Atlantic Ocean that never had electricity, phones, or cars.
It’s coming to life again, though, thanks to new technology—a multimedia book project by Notre Dame anthropologist and fellow of the Medieval Institute Ian Kuijt, filmmaker William Donaruma ’89, alumni Ryan Lash ’10 and Katie Shakour ’09, and Tommy Burke, a local Irish historian-archaeologist.
Through an innovative collaboration, Kuijt, a professor in the Department of Anthropology, and Donaruma, a teaching professor in the Department of Film, Television, and Theatre, have developed Island Places, Island Lives, a multimedia book detailing the heritage and history of Inishark and its neighboring island, Inishbofin.
Along with text and photographs, the book incorporates short videos of the island developed by Kuijt and Donaruma that can be viewed on a smartphone or tablet when readers, using a free companion app, hold their device over individual pictures in the book.
“It is a wonderful way of connecting people to these places in a really immediate and visual way,” Kuijt said. “This technology has never been used before in any kind of substantial educational project—and it is exciting to present this history in a format that people will really be able to engage with.”