Advancing the cause of liberty

Irish women writers entered the international publishing scene in unprecedented numbers in the period between 1878 and 1922. This collection of new essays explores how Irish women, officially disenfranchised through much of that era, felt inclined and at liberty to exercise their political influence through the unofficial channels of their literary output. By challenging existing and often narrowly-defined conceptions of what constitutes ‘politics’, the chapters investigate Irish women writers’ responses to, expressions of, and dialogue with a contemporary political landscape that included not only the debates surrounding nationalism and unionism, but also those concerning education, cosmopolitanism, language, Empire, economics, philanthropy, socialism, the marriage ‘market’, the publishing industry, the commercial market, and employment. The volume demonstrates how women from a variety of religious, social, and regional backgrounds – including Emily Lawless, L. T. Meade, Katharine Tynan, Lady Gregory, Rosa Mulholland, and the Ulster writers Ella Young, Beatrice Grimshaw, and F. E. Crichton – used their work to advance their own private and public political concerns through astute manoeuvrings both in the expanding publishing industry and against the partisan expectations of an ever-growing readership. Close readings of individual texts are framed by new archival research and detailed historical contextualisation. Offering fresh critical perspectives by internationally-renowned scholars including Lauren Arrington, Heidi Hansson, Margaret Kelleher, Patrick Maume, James H. Murphy, and Eve Patten, Irish Women’s Writing, 1878-1922: Advancing the Cause of Liberty is an innovative and essential contribution to the study of Irish literature as well as women’s writing at the turn of the twentieth century.

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The second republic, 1960–2016
Author: Emer Nolan

This book is comprised of five interlinked portraits of exceptional Irish women from various fields – literature, journalism, music, politics – who have achieved outstanding reputations since the 1960s: Edna O’Brien, Sinéad O’Connor, Nuala O’Faolain, Bernadette McAliskey, and Anne Enright. Several of these could claim to be among the best-known Irish people of their day in the world. This book looks at their achievements – works of art in some cases, but also life-writing, interviews and speeches – and at their reception in Ireland and elsewhere, shedding light on some of their shared preoccupations, including equality, sexuality and nationalism. The main focus is on the ways in which these distinguished women make sense of their formative experiences as Irish people and how they in turn have been understood as representative modern figures in Ireland.

Origins, education and careers
Author: Laura Kelly

This book is the first comprehensive history of Irish women in medicine in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. It focuses on the debates surrounding women's admission to Irish medical schools, the geographical and social backgrounds of early women medical students, their educational experiences and subsequent careers. It is the first collective biography of the 760 women who studied medicine at Irish institutions in the period and, in contrast to previous histories, puts forward the idea that women medical students and doctors were treated fairly and often favourably by the Irish medical hierarchy. It highlights the distinctiveness of Irish medical education in contrast with that in Britain and is also unique in terms of the combination of rich sources it draws upon, such as official university records from Irish universities, medical journals, Irish newspapers, Irish student magazines, the memoirs of Irish women doctors, and oral history accounts.

This book reconsiders the history of women in medicine, higher education and the professions in Ireland. It will appeal not only to medical historians, social historians and women’s historians in Ireland, the UK and abroad but also to members of the general public.

Author: Cara Delay

Irish Women and the Creation of Modern Catholicism is the only book-length study of lay Catholic women in modern Irish history. Focusing on the pivotal century from 1850 to 1950, it analyses the roles that middle-class, working-class, and rural poor lay women played in the evolution of Irish Catholicism and thus the creation of modern Irish identities. This project demonstrates that in an age of Church growth and renewal stretching from the aftermath of the Great Famine through the early years of the Irish Republic, lay women were essential to all aspects of Catholic devotional life, including both home-based religion and public Catholic rituals. It also reveals that women, by rejecting, negotiating, and reworking Church dictates, complicated Church and clerical authority. Irish Women and the Creation of Modern Catholicism re-evaluates the relationship between the institutional Church, the clergy, and women, positioning lay Catholic women as central actors in the making of modern Ireland. It also contests views that the increasing power of the Catholic Church caused a uniform decline in Irish women’s status after the Great Famine of the 1840s, revealing that middle-class, working-class, and rural poor lay women fought with their priests, dominated household religion, and led parish rituals, thus proving integral to the development of a modern Irish Catholic ethos and culture.

Emigration, marriage and the First World War
Laura Kelly

6 Trends in the careers of Irish women doctors: emigration, marriage and the First World War I n this chapter, I will examine the themes of emigration and marriage and how these affected the careers of Irish women medical graduates. Following this, I will investigate whether the First World War resulted in a change of opportunities for Irish women in medicine. Historiographically, the war is seen as a turning point in history, in that it inaugurated significant life and career changes for women.1 Such views have been challenged by feminist historians, who have

in Irish women in medicine, c.1880s–1920s
Why they matter
Mary E. Daly

M&H 01_Tonra 01 08/04/2014 07:13 Page 17 1 Irish women and the diaspora: why they matter Mary E. Daly Resolving to do something to better the circumstances of her family, the young Irish girl leaves her home for America. There she goes into service, or engages in some kind of feminine employment. The object she has in view – the same for which she left her home and ventured to a strange country – protects her from all danger, especially to her character: that object, her dream by day and night, is the welfare of her family, whom she is determined, if possible

in Women and Irish diaspora identities
Sinéad Kennedy

5 Irish women and the Celtic Tiger economy SINÉAD KENNEDY The term ‘Celtic Tiger’ has connotations that extend well beyond the realm of the purely economic. It has, for instance, become a metaphor for a new national consensus that constantly reminds us how ‘we have never had it so good’. This chapter takes issue with this consensus and argues instead that, while the recent boom in the Irish Republic has produced enormous wealth for a small minority, the majority of Irish people have benefited little from this apparent economic miracle. In fact, there has been a

in The end of Irish history?
Contexts and comparisons
Bronwen Walter

M&H 07_Tonra 01 08/04/2014 07:19 Page 133 7 Placing Irish women within and beyond the British Empire: contexts and comparisons Bronwen Walter Women have been leaving Ireland to settle abroad over many centuries. Although their scattering has been on a global scale, including locations both with substantial numbers and with small pockets, there has been a particular emphasis on the English-speaking world, shadowing the colonial enterprise of the larger neighbour, Britain. This chapter aims to explore different contexts in which settlement has taken place, both

in Women and Irish diaspora identities
Ciaran O’Neill and Mai Yatani

sophisticated social, cultural, and literary scene, despite the existence of an energetic and expanding industrial middle class.2 The social circles of Limerick, Galway, or Cork were likewise too small and too insular to allow even the most imaginative of authors to use them as a backdrop for a society novel. Since the Act of Union, an aspirant politico, socialite, or dandy of any merit or ambition found themselves drawn inexorably to London.3 100 Women, ambition, and the city, 1890–1910 During the period from 1890 to 1910, Irish women writers such as Hannah Lynch, Katherine

in Irish women’s writing, 1878–1922
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Cara Delay

’s working-class mothers prayed with their rosary beads ‘in church, home, on the street, in shops or queues, almost anywhere’.3 These accounts illustrate that lay Irish women came to represent faith and nation in the modern age. They testify to the central positions that lay women held in the religious worlds of nineteenth and twentieth-century Ireland even as they document both changes and continuities in how women practiced their faith from the post-famine decades to 1950. In the immediate aftermath of the Great Famine, the Irish Catholic Church remained institutionally

in Irish women and the creation of modern Catholicism, 1850–1950