Category: Podcasts

Lord Edward and “Faithful Tony” The story of Tony Small, valet to Lord Edward Fitzgerald

Stella TillyardStella Tillyard in conversation with Marion Lyons
Citizen Lord is the title of Stella Tillyard’s bestselling biography of Lord Edward Fitzgerald, one of the most fascinating characters in Irish history. Tony Small was a runaway American slave who rescued Lord Edward from the battlefield in South Carolina in 1781 and nursed him back to health. Lord Edward offered him a job and for the next decade Tony was with Lord Edward constantly – in North America, in Paris after the Revolution, in Dublin and Kildare. At some point after Lord Edward’s death in 1798, Tony left Dublin for London and died there sometime after 1805. What might Tony’s story tell us about colonialism? How did people of colour and minorities experience Dublin in the late eighteenth century? What are the implications of Tony’s story for the writing of history?
Stella Tillyard is an historian and author of several books including the best-selling Aristocrats. Professor Marion Lyons is Head of the Department of History in Maynooth University.

Recorded at Printworks, Dublin Castle on 26 September 2015.

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Belfast Boys: How Unionists and Nationalists fought and died together in the First World War

Belfast Boys by Richard GraysonRichard Grayson in conversation with John Horne
This is the story of men from either side of West Belfast’s sectarian divide who went to fight in the Great War. Richard Grayson follows the volunteers of the 36th and 16th divisions who fought on the Somme and side-by-side at Messines, recovering the history of the forgotten West Belfast servicemen, and the traumatic lives they endured after the war. In so doing, he tells a new story which challenges popular perceptions of the war and explains why remembrance remains so controversial in Belfast today.
September 2015 marks the centenary of the death of Grayson’s own great-uncle from Lurgan who served and died on the Western Front in the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Irish Rifles.
Richard S. Grayson is Professor of Twentieth Century History at the University of London. John Horne is Professor of Modern European History at Trinity College, Dublin.

Recorded at Printworks, Dublin Castle on 26 September 2015.

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Dynasty: The Rise and Fall of the House of Caesar

Dynasty by Tom HollandTom Holland in conversation with Zuleika Rodgers
After conquering the world, the great Roman republic collapsed. Rome was drowned in blood. So terrible were the civil wars that the Roman people finally came to welcome the rule of an autocrat who could give them peace: Augustus – “The Divinely Favoured One”. The lurid glamour of the dynasty founded by Augustus has never faded. Now, in the sequel to Rubicon, Tom Holland gives a dazzling portrait of Rome’s first imperial dynasty. Dynasty traces the full story of Roman rule: its allure and the blood-steeped shadows cast by its crimes. It is a world populated by murderers and metrosexuals, adulterers and druids, scheming grandmothers and reluctant gladiators. Dynasty is the portrait of a family that transformed and stupefied Rome.
Tom Holland is one of Britain’s greatest popular historians and a best-selling author of several works on classical and medieval history. He is also a novelist and documentary film-maker. Professor Zuleika Rodgers is Head of the Department of Near & Middle East Studies at Trinity College, Dublin.

Recorded at Printworks, Dublin Castle on 26 September 2015.

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KL: A History of Nazi Concentration Camps

KL by Nikolaus WachsmannNikolaus Wachsmann in conversation with Robert Gerwarth
By the end of 1945, the SS concentration camp system had become an overwhelming landscape of terror in central Europe. Twenty-two large camps and over one thousand satellite camps throughout Germany and Europe were at the heart of the Nazi campaign of repression and intimidation. Dr Nikolaus Wachsmann is the first historian to write a complete history of the camps, examining the organisation of an immense genocidal machine, whilst drawing a vivid picture of life inside the camps for the individual prisoner. Wachsmann’s superb book looks set to become the standard work on one of humankind’s darkest hours.
Nikolaus Wachsmann is Professor of Modern European History in the Department of History, Classics and Archaeology at Birkbeck College, University of London. Robert Gerwarth is Professor of Modern History at UCD and Director of the Centre for War Studies.

Recorded at Printworks, Dublin Castle on 26 September 2015.

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Silk Roads by Peter Frankopan

The Silk Roads: A New History of the World

Peter Frankopan in conversation with David McWilliams
For centuries, fame and fortune was to be found in the west, in the New World of the Americas. Today, the east is taking centre stage in international politics, commerce and culture, shaping the modern world. This region, the true centre of the earth, is obscure to many in the west and yet this is where civilization itself began, where the world’s great religions were born and took root. The Silk Roads linked continents and oceans together. Along them flowed ideas, goods, disease and death. This was where empires were won – and where they were lost. As a new era emerges, the patterns of exchange are mirroring those that have criss-crossed Asia for millennia. The Silk Roads are rising again.
Dr. Peter Frankopan is Senior Research Fellow at Worcester College, Oxford and Director of the Oxford Centre for Byzantine Research. David McWilliams is an economist, author and broadcaster.

Recorded at Printworks, Dublin Castle on 26 September 2015.

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Bloody Sunday 1920: The Day that Shook Dublin

Bloodied Field by Michael FoleyWith Michael Foley, John Borgonovo and Padraig Yeates,
Historian John Borgonovo discusses the synchronised IRA attack that morning designed to cripple British intelligence services in Ireland. As fourteen men lay dead in their beds, trucks of police and military rumbled through the city streets to Croke Park as hundreds of people clamoured at the gates of Dublin Castle seeking refuge. In The Bloodied Field, award-winning journalist and author Michael Foley recounts the extraordinary story of Bloody Sunday, 21 November 1920 in Croke Park, and the 90 seconds of shooting that changed Ireland forever. In a deeply intimate portrait he tells the stories of those killed, the police and military personnel who were in Croke Park that day, and the families left shattered in its aftermath. Distinguished Dublin historian Padraig Yeates moderates the discussion about this most extraordinary day in Irish history.
A former winner of the Boyle Sports Irish Sportsbook of the Year, Michael Foley is acting sports editor and GAA correspondent for the Irish edition of the Sunday Times. John Borgonovo teaches history at University College Cork and has written extensively on the Civil War period. Padraig Yeates is a distinguished social and labour historian and the author of City in Revolution which was published in 2014.

Recorded at Printworks, Dublin Castle on 26 September 2015.

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Red Fortress: the secret heart of Russia’s history – Catherine Merridale in conversation with Séamus Martin

Both beautiful and profoundly menacing, the Kremlin has dominated Moscow for many centuries. Behind its great red walls many of the most startling events in Russia’s history have been acted out. It is both a real place and an imaginative idea; a shorthand for a certain kind of secretive power, but also the heart of a specific Russian authenticity. Catherine Merridale, one of the foremost experts on 20th-century Russian history, discusses her exceptional new book Red Fortress with Séamus Martin.

Catherine Merridale is Professor of Contemporary History at Queen Mary, University of London. In 2013 she won the prestigious Wolfson Prize for History for Red Fortress. Professor Merridale is the author of many books on Russian history including her tour de force on the ordinary Russian soldier, Ivan’s War: The Red Army, 1939-45.

Séamus Martin is the former Moscow correspondent and international editor of the Irish Times.

Recorded at The Printworks Venue, Dublin Castle on 28th September 2014.

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The Green Fields: the Road to War – A work of documentary theatre on the role of Ireland in the Great War

Over 200,000 Irishmen served in the British Army during the First World War, the biggest single deployment of Irish soldiers in the country’s military history. ‘The Road to War’ uses speeches, songs and letters from 1914 and 1915 to chart Ireland’s journey into the Great War, from the brass bands on the quayside to the horrors of the Dardanelles. We follow the poet and journalist Tom Kettle MP from the recruitment platform to the Somme, and trace the momentous first year of the conflict through the speeches of Redmond and Carson, the writings of Pearse and Connolly, and the letters home of ordinary Irish soldiers. “Green Fields” uses soldiers’ letters from the Monica Roberts Collection, part of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association Archive in the Dublin City Library and Archive.

With Bryan Murray, John Cronin and Danny McColgan; Writer and director Kevin McGee; Original music from the period courtesy of the Royal Irish Academy of Music under composer Jack Cawley.

Recorded at The Printworks Venue, Dublin Castle on 27th September 2014.

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Women at War 1914-18: History Ireland Hedge School

The Great War was Europe’s first ‘total war’ which affected whole populations, male and female, and not just the men fighting in the trenches. How did Irish women respond to the war? To what extent was their response determined by the divisions in society at large – class, unionist/nationalist and Irish Volunteers/National Volunteers? In particular, how did Cumann na mBan, whose centenary also occurs this year, respond to the latter split? And to what extent was
femininity used (and abused) in propaganda for and against the war?

History Ireland editor, Tommy Graham, chairs a lively discussion on these and related matters with his panel of experts—John Borgonovo (UCC), Fionnuala Walsh (TCD), Liz Gillis (Kilmainham Jail) and Mary McAuliffe (UCD Women’s Studies).

Recorded at The Printworks Venue, Dublin Castle on 27th September 2014.

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The Warsaw Uprising of 1944

2014 marks the 70th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising. In August 1944, the Polish resistance Home Army fought in vain to free the city from Nazi occupation. After 63 days of fighting and around 200,000 deaths, most of them civilians, the Polish city was entirely razed by the German army on the orders of Hitler.

To mark the 70th anniversary of the rising, we were delighted to welcome Tymoteusz Prochnik, head of the Archive Department of the Warsaw Uprising Museum. The Museum was opened on the 60th anniversary of the outbreak of fighting in Warsaw and offers visitors a moving tribute to those Warsaw residents who fought and died in one of the most painful and heroic episodes in the whole of the Second World War.

Zbyszek Zalinski has lived in Ireland since 2001. He is a presenter and researcher on RTÉ Radio 1.

Recorded at The Printworks Venue, Dublin Castle on 27th September 2014.

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Dublin in the Viking World – Sean Duffy and Philip Parker with moderator Elva Johnston

What was Dublin like in the Viking era and what status did the city enjoy in the greater Viking world? In this anniversary year of the Battle of Clontarf, two historians bring their expert knowledge to this debate.

Sean Duffy’s Brian Boru and the Battle of Clontarf offers a new interpretation of the role of the Vikings in Irish affairs and explains how Brian emerged from obscurity to attain the high-kingship of Ireland because of his exploitation of the Viking presence.

Philip Parker is the author of The Northmen’s Fury: a History of the Viking World which describes how a region at the edge of Europe came to dominate and to terrorise much of the rest of the continent for nearly three centuries.

Elva Johnston is a lecturer in history at University College Dublin.

Recorded at The Printworks Venue, Dublin Castle on 27th September 2014.

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Killers of the King – Charles Spencer in conversation with Jane Ohlmeyer

January, 1649. After seven years of fighting in the bloodiest war in Britain’s history, Parliament faced a problem: what to do with Charles I, a defeated king who refused to surrender? Parliamentarians resolved to disregard the Divine Right of Kings and sentenced him to death. On a scaffold outside Whitehall, in an event unique in English history, the King of England was executed. After the Restoration, his son, Charles II enacted a deadly wave of retribution against the ‘regicides’.

Bestselling historian Charles Spencer brings us a powerful tale of revenge from the dark heart of royal history and a fascinating insight into the dangers of political and religious allegiance in Stuart England.

Professor Jane Ohlmeyer is Erasmus Smith’s Professor of Modern History at Trinity College, Dublin, and Vice-Provost for Global Relations.

Recorded at The Printworks Venue, Dublin Castle on 26th September 2014.

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Remembering the Great War – Sir Hew Strachan in conversation with John Horne

Sir Hew Strachan is one of the world’s foremost experts on the First World War. His three-volume history of the conflict, the first of which was published in 2001, is likely to become the standard academic reference work on the war. Max Hastings called it ‘one of the most impressive books of modern history in a generation’.

The centenary commemorations of the Great War have fuelled an intense debate on the nature of that epic cataclysm and Professor Strachan’s discussion with Trinity’s John Horne was one of the highlights of the festival.

Sir Hew Strachan is Professor of the History of War at All Souls Oxford.

John Horne is Professor of Modern European History at Trinity College Dublin.

Recorded at The Printworks Venue, Dublin Castle on 28th September 2014.

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Altered Pasts: counterfactuals in history

Richard J.  Evans in conversation with Diarmuid Ferriter

The question ‘what if?’ has always fascinated historians. Over the past few decades alternative history has become a popular stomping ground for serious historians. In his new book, Altered Pasts, Richard J. Evans turns a critical, slightly jaundiced eye on the subject. Most importantly, Evans takes counterfactual history seriously, looking at the insights, pitfalls and intellectual implications of changing one thread in the weave of history.

Sir Richard J. Evans is Professor of Modern History at Cambridge University. He is best known for his research on the history of Germany in the 19th and 20th centuries, particularly the Third Reich.

Diarmuid Ferriter is Professor of Modern Irish History at University College Dublin.

Recorded at The Printworks Venue, Dublin Castle on 26th September 2014.

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Dublin: the making of a capital city

With David Dickson, Mary E. Daly, Colm Lennon and moderator Raymond Gillespie

Dublin has many histories: for a thousand years a modest urban settlement on the quiet waters of the Irish Sea, for the last four hundred it has experienced great  – and often astonishing – change. A quartet of Irish historians discuss the provenance of Dublin as a nation’s capital. From second city of Empire in Georgian times to post-Act of Union decline, from hotbed of revolution to Free State capital, these and other aspects of Dublin’s history are debated, using as a touchstone David Dickson’s magnificent new book on the history of the city.

Recorded at The Printworks Venue, Dublin Castle on 26th September 2014.

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