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Video: St Brigid's Day 2022

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On 1 February 2022, the Embassy of Ireland to Belgium hosted archivist-historian-broadcaster Catriona Crowe in conversation with Suzanne Lynch, Politico Brussels Playbook co-author, for a lively discussion of women’s history in independent Ireland to mark St. Brigid's Day. The conversation focussed on the Second Wave of Irish Feminism, and was followed by Q&A with the audience. The event started with a brief history of the role of women during the foundation of the State, and the First Wave of Irish Feminism, before turning to focus on the Second Wave of Irish Feminism in the 1960s and ’70s, which achieved a great deal of advancement for Irish women in a very short time. With Suzanne guiding the conversation, Catriona shared her encyclopedic knowledge of Irish women's history as well as her personal experiences as an activist. She touched upon the marriage ban, access to contraception, the divorce referendum, mother and baby homes, and the politics of the time.

Meet the Panel

Catriona Crowe is former Head of Special Projects at the National Archives of Ireland. She was Manager of the Census Online Project, which placed the Irish 1901 and 1911 censuses online, free to access. She is editor of Dublin 1911 (2011), and a member of the editorial team of Documents on Irish Foreign Policy. Catriona is a member of the Royal Irish Academy, Honorary President of the Irish Labour History Society and a former President of the Women’s History Association of Ireland. She is Chairperson of the SAOL Project, a rehabilitation initiative for women with addiction problems, based in the North Inner City, and of the Inner City Renewal Group. She is Curator of the First Thought Talks strand of the Galway International Arts Festival. She presented the RTE documentaries Ireland before the Rising (2016), and Life After the Rising (2019).

Suzanne Lynch is a journalist with POLITICO, co-authoring its daily Playbook newsletter from Brussels. Prior to joining Politico, she worked as a foreign correspondent and finance reporter for the Irish Times. She was based in the United States as Washington Correspondent between 2017 and 2021. Previously, she was European Correspondent, leading the Irish times’ coverage of the euro zone crisis, Brexit and the refugee crisis from Brussels. She has also written extensively on financial and arts issues, and is a regular contributor to international TV and radio platforms. She holds a BA in English and Music from University College Dublin and has a PhD in English Literature from Cambridge University where she researched the work of Virginia Woolf.

Disclaimer: Any views and opinions expressed in this webinar are those of the speakers and not reflective of the Department of Foreign Affairs.

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