”Why Grandmother, what big teeth you have’: Q&A on 1916 Commemorations

Cunning Hired Knaves

I received some questions from Ian Curran, an Irish journalist based in London, on the subject of the commemoration of the 1916 Rising in Britain and Ireland. My answers are below. Thanks to Ian for the questions.


1) With regard to the ‘Reclaim 1916’ project, what is it about the Rising, from your perspective, that has to be reclaimed?

I don’t know a great deal about the Reclaim 1916 project, other than what I’ve seen on its website, though I would be broadly sympathetic. For me, what marks 1916 out from what went before is the idea of rupture from the existing regime: you proclaim a republic and you set about creating it. In this sense ‘reclaiming’ 1916 feels slightly strange, this idea that you’re seeking to go back to what it was all about at its origin in order to begin anew. My perspective, I suppose, would be more along…

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