C.DESMOND GREAVES (1913-1988)
C.Desmond Greaves, whose work and writings inspired the foundation of this annual Weekend School, was one of Ireland’s leading labour historians. He was author of “The Life and Times of James Connolly”; “Liam Mellows and the Irish Revolution”; “Sean O’Casey: Politics and Art” ; “Wolfe Tone and the Irish Nation”; “History of the Irish Transport and General Workers Union: The Formative Years” ; “The Irish Crisis”, and two volumes of verse, “Four Letter Verses and the Mountbatten Award” and “Elephants Against Rome”.
Desmond Greaves believed that the peaceful way to end the partition of Ireland was to secure maximum equality between Nationalists and Unionists in the Six Counties, thereby removing any rational basis for Unionism as an ideology that justified domination over Nationalists and opening the way for Northern Unionists to rediscover over time the political implications of the common Irishness they share with their Nationalist fellow countrymen and women.
As an activist in the Connolly Association, London, and editor from 1948 to 1988 of its monthly newspaper “The Irish Democrat”, he pioneered the idea of a campaign for civil rights as the way to shatter Unionist political domination, which was taken up by the l960s Northern Civil Rights Movement.
He held that it was essential for Ireland to win allies internationally for any moves to end Partition and that organised British public opinion, especially as represented in the British Labour and trade union movement, which the Irish community in Britain could significantly influence,was the most important such potential ally.
He believed that in the era of the European Union and the near-global domination of Transnational Capital, the most important political task for democrats and the Labour Movement was to join in an international campaign in defence of the Nation State as the fundamental locus of political democracy and the only mechanism which history has evolved for imposing social control on private capital.
This made him an an opponent of the European Union/Community from its inception.
FRIDAY 11 SEPTEMBER 7.30 PM
1.The Disunited United Kingdom: dilemmas for British and Irish politics
– Allan Armstrong, member of the Radical Independence Campaign, Scotland, and the Scottish Left Project; author of “From Davitt to Connolly” and “The Ghost of James Connolly”, contributor to “Unstated – Writers on Scottish Independence”
– Declan Kearney, National Chairperson of Sinn Fein, editor of “Uncomfortable Conversations: an Initiative for Dialogue”
– Chair: Mick Carty, General Secretary, Connolly Association, London
SATURDAY 12 SEPTEMBER 11.00 AM
2. EU Foreign and Security Policy: Ireland and the new Cold War with Russia
– Horst Teubert, German foreign policy analyst, editor of www.german-foreign-policy.com
– Roger Cole, Chairman, Peace and Neutrality Alliance
– Niall Farrell, Galway Alliance Against War
– Chair: Patricia McKenna, former Green MEP for Dublin
SATURDAY 12 SEPTEMBER 2.30 PM
3.The economic crisis and the Irish media
– Julien Mercille, School of Geography and Planning, UCD, author of “Media Coverage of the European economic crisis: the case of Ireland”
– Harry Browne, School of Media Studies, Dublin Institute of Technology, journalist and activist
– Chair: Dr Mary Murphy, Lecturer in Irish Politics and Society, NUI Maynooth
SUNDAY 13 SEPTEMBER 11.00 AM
4. International financial feudalism: TTIP (The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership)
– Paul Murphy TD, Dublin South-West, Anti-Austerity Alliance
– Frank Keoghan, President, Technical Engineering and Electrical Union
– Joseph Jamison, former research officer AFL-CIO, New York
– Chair: Siobhán O’Donoghue, Founding Director of Uplift, civic society activist
SUNDAY 13 SEPTEMBER 2.30 PM
5. Inter-imperialist rivalry and World War 1: Britain’s role
– Gerry Docherty, author of “Hidden History: the secret origins of the First World War”(with Jim Macgregor)
– Respondent: Dr Tommy Graham, historian, Editor and founder of “History Ireland” magazine
– Chair: Mary Cullen, historian, author of “Telling it Our Way:essays in gender history”
Bar-food and get-together venue at The Long Stone, Townsend Street, over the weekend
COST, PAYABLE AT THE DOOR:
Full School €25
Individual sessions €6
HOW TO GET THERE
The Ireland Institute, 27 Pearse Street, is along the north side of Trinity College in the centre of Dublin. It is the former home and family business place of the 1916 leaders Patrick and Willie Pearse. The Weekend School is held in the new hall at the back of the building.