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Generous Effort: Gender and Social History

October 1, 2021 @ 1:00 pm


Presented by The Irish Manuscripts Commission.

Speaking in the Seanad on 4 June 1924, popular historian and senator Alice Stopford-Green urged the new government: ‘there must be the most generous effort made to give us our history and to give it to us on lines of full and adequate knowledge’. Since 1928 the Irish Manuscripts Commission (IMC) has been doing just that by publishing rare, once hidden, and vulnerable sources for the island’s history. The scholars who edit these publications do so out of their commitment to telling the full story of Ireland’s past and their desire to repair the losses sustained following the Four Courts fire of 1922. The IMC has, thanks to the generosity of generations of men and women passionate about Irish history, published all sorts of documents previously unknown or unnoticed. These range from admission records for workhouses, to the private correspondence of aristocratic women, to maps and poetry. In this series for the Festival of History several historians and others will speak about their favourite IMC volume, the one that they come back to again and again, the history source that they use constantly, and which has shaped their understanding of a particular time or event in history. This an opportunity to go behind the scenes, to have an intimate glimpse into how history is thought about and how it is written. Historians try to write objectively but their research is driven by love of the past. You are invited to hear about the historical sources, all sorts of historical sources, that fuel that love.

Generous Effort: Politics and Religion

IMC editions — from poetry to personal correspondence — preserve in print a great variety of sources containing overt and more subtle details on how women lived and worked in Irish society in the past. These records allow historians to examine subjects such as marriage and land ownership, religion and art, from a contemporary perspective.

This video will be available to watch on YouTube. Video links will be shared on www.irishmanuscripts.ie/news and on their Twitter account.


October 1, 2021
1:00 pm
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