A Swansea University Creative Writing lecturer will be a keynote speaker at the 35th California Celtic Conference held between 15 -17 March 2013.

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Dr Jasmine Donahaye will return to familiar ground as she used to live in California and graduated from the University of Berkeley with a BA in Celtic Studies in 2000.

As keynote speaker, Dr Donahaye will deliver a lecture entitled ‘A Welsh Colony in Palestine?’ and give a poetry reading during the opening reception, in association with the conference, the English Department, the Department of Near Eastern Studies and the Judah Magnes Museum.

Dr Donahaye’s talk will focus on John Mills’ mid-nineteenth century proposal to establish a Welsh colony in Palestine. She will shed light on Reverend Mills’ disagreement with Michael D Jones about the most suitable place for a Welsh settlement, and will examine questions of Welsh colonialism and conversionism.

The writer and editor has contributed to the growing body of work in British Jewish studies and the study of the Israel-Palestine situation by asking critical questions about the relationship that Wales has with Israel and Palestine.

Her extensive research culminated in the publication of Whose People? Wales, Israel and Palestine’ last year, by the University of Wales Press.

Those interested in the history, languages and cultures of the Celtic countries will be present at the conference and papers will be delivered from across the discipline of Celtic Studies, covering both medieval and modern topics.

Dr Jasmine Donahaye said: ‘‘It’s an honour to be invited to come back to the University of Berkeley in this capacity, and I’m very much looking forward to what promises to be an eclectic and stimulating conference.’’