The Daniel O’Connell Summer School takes place in the Library, Cahersiveen on Friday 23rd August and in Derrynane House, Caherdaniel on Saturday 24th August 2019. The School highlights the legacy of Daniel O’Connell, nationally and internationally, explores issues of importance to O’Connell and which are still relevant today and celebrates the rich traditions and folklore of O’Connell’s native South Kerry. This year, Seamus Mallon, former Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland and Deputy Leader of the SDLP will deliver the Daniel O’Connell lecture in Cahersiveen on the afternoon of Friday 23rd. Seamus has recently published his autobiography in which he calls for a new beginning in Northern Ireland, based on the idea that it is a shared home place for all its people and that Irish unity can only come about through Unionist consent.

Seamus Mallon

Eucharia Meehan

Terence Dooley

The contribution of women in the public sphere will be the theme of the opening session of the School on Friday 23rd. The speakers will be Dr Mary McAuliffe, Lecturer in Gender Studies, UCD, Dr Eucharia Meehan, CEO of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies and Dr Yvonne Galligan, Director for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion at the Technological University Dublin. Later that morning, Dr Martin O’Donoghue, University of Limerick, will discuss the life and legacy of Tom Harrington Irish Party MP and Professor Terence Dooley, Maynooth University will talk about ‘the big houses’ of Ireland during the turbulent period 1890-1925.

On the morning of Saturday 24th August in Derrynane House, Caherdaniel, Dr Fergus D’Arcy, Emeritus Professor of Modern History, UCD will talk about Daniel O’Connell and the trade union movement. Dr Cormac Ó Gráda, Emeritus Professor of Economics at UCD will examine the impact of the Great Famine on Kenmare and Deaglán de Bréadún, political editor of the Irish Sun will discuss O’Connell’s relationship with the Irish language. The next session will focus on the traditions and folklore of South Kerry. Mary McGillycuddy, Tralee will explore the county’s seine boat tradition and the role of women in fishing.

Dr Fergus D’Arcy

Cormac Ó Gráda

After lunch, Hugh Gough, Emeritus Professor of History at UCD will recall the visit by General Charles de Gaulle to Derrynane fifty years ago and Dr Fionnghuala Sweeney, UCD will talk about O’Connell’s stand against slavery and his influence on Frederick Douglass, the great American abolitionist.

Mary O’Connor, Chair of the Organising Committee said how much she was looking forward to welcoming everyone to this year’s School. ‘Professor Maurice Bric, Director of the School, has prepared a stimulating programme with excellent speakers and a warm welcome awaits all who attend the School’ she said.

See full programme here