Commemoration & Memory in Public History

All countries need heroes. As Ireland re-examines its history during its centenary decade, there have been several debates about how to make the memorials more expansive, more inclusive. Should the Irish Catholic RIC officers be remembered? What was the role of women in the fight? How do we commemorate partition – and should we, given the current Brexit tension? Historians and others have argued that strong ties to favored heroes need not be severed, but other men and women equally committed to a free Ireland but with a differing vision must also be honored. So too must understanding, whenever justly deserved, be practiced when remembering those who stood in the way of Irish independence. The American experience and debate about Confederate statues and past slave-owning Presidents can help inform this discussion. Public history is important and deciding who is honored and commemorated is a complicated and nuanced affair.

This event will be on Facebook and Zoom - email the museum for the link, and there will be a limited number able to attend in person at the museum. Please call to reserve your seat.