Skip to Content

James Connolly

Book Review: 'The Best of Pearse'

Patrick Pearse

'The Best of Pearse', edited by Proinsias Mac Aonghusa and Liam O Reagain. The Mercier Press, Cork, 10s.

This book is a collection of the writings of Patrick H. Pearse who was executed by the military representatives of the British ruling class after the collapse of what has come to be known as the Easter Rising, in Dublin in 1916.

Pearse practised at the Bar for a brief period and is reputed to have originated the IRA tactic of refusing to recognise British Courts. Useful though such heroics, and their inevitable tactical offsprings, proved to the British Authorities (and later the N. Ireland and Eire governments) in creating “gaol battalions” of the IRA, it is not for this that Pearse is remembered.

Exhibition Review: 'We Only Want the Earth’

Among the anniversaries being marked this year is the centenary of the Dublin Easter Rising (see the March Socialist Standard). James Connolly, who was probably its best-known figure and who had to be tied to a chair so he could be executed by a British firing squad, is commemorated in an exhibition ‘We Only Want the Earth’ at the Working Class Movement Library in Salford. As the curators note, Connolly’s life ‘is often remembered more for the manner of his leaving it than for the politically active way he lived it’ (echoes of the Thane of Cawdor in Macbeth).

Making Nationalists

The world is divided into almost 200 different countries and most of them celebrate some type of annual ‘national’ day.

The most widely known examples are the 4th July Independence Day of the United States and Bastille Day on 14 July in France. Mexico has its ‘El Grito’ in September which celebrates the beginning of its struggle to end Spanish rule and Cuba has its Liberation Day to mark the advent of the Castro regime. Britain is unusual in not having any widely recognised national day although the Queen’s Official Birthday and St. George’s Day (at least in England) partly fulfil the role. In Ireland, St. Patrick’s Day on the 17 March is generally accepted as the national day (especially in

The Easter Rising, 1916

An account of the famous Easter Rising, fifty years old this month, from a member of the World Socialist Party of Ireland

On Easter Monday fifty years ago, a group of men stood on the steps of the General Post Office in Dublin.

Their leader, Patrick Pearse, read out the proclamation of the Establishment of an Irish Republic. This was one of a series of incidents which startled Dubliners on that Easter Monday morning, when columns of uniformed and armed men took control of several buildings in the city. The rebellion was being carried out by members of the Irish Volunteers and the Irish Citizen Army.

Syndicate content