RING OUT, WILD BELLS is a collection of texts informed by artistic acts of narrative reclamation and the artist-led and independent publishing environment in Ireland.

To evoke the Irish Leaving Cert syllabus, Adrienne Rich asserts that, “The impulse to create begins – often terribly and fearfully – in a tunnel of silence,” and that “every real poem is the breaking of an existing silence.” For the title of this issue, we wanted to celebrate the noise, the rebellion and the righteousness of claiming one’s own narrative. To properly understand noise, we need to understand silence as generative; as part of the story. This issue began by researching the context that Bloomers exists within, the changing environment that gave way to our organisation and the legacy of projects that came before us.

Investigating our position as an Irish, artistled publishing collective that operates within a feminist ethos meant exploring past examples of feminist publishing in Ireland (as well as a number of contemporary, alternative publishing and storytelling platforms) in order to better understand the experiences and motivations that drive us all. Limiting this context to the island of Ireland imbued our research with a focus on geography, a common land that we all inhabit – and this, in turn, shaped our inquiry. Examining geographically embedded narratives and the relationship between the reclamation of story and space became one of the central themes within our research.

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