Peelers And Sheep
April 1920 – Month of Revolution
In this second episode of the Divided Land series we’ll be looking at a ‘Land for the People’ demonstration that took place in Killeshin on the borders of counties Laois and Carlow in April 1920 – and broadening out to look at that month – a month of revolution that saw the burning of police barracks, a general strike in support of hunger striking political prisoners, and industrial action to restrict food exports. We’ll also hear something of the growth of a ‘peace party’ within Dublin Castle and we’ll have an overview of some of the political career of Patrick ‘Paudge’ Gaffney, a Killeshin man and a key activist in the ‘Land for People’ demonstration.
Wednesday, March 29, 2023
Cattle Driving Under The Tricolour
This first episode is on what happened when the First World War hit Irish farms and Irish kitchen tables, and we’ll be looking at the tillage movement of 1918 – a time with an intersection between the rise of Sinn Féin and agrarian social conflict and a grievous food crisis. This episode highlights a specific incident in the hinterland of Clonaslee at the foot of the Slieve Blooms in February 1918. We’ll end up then with the conscription crisis of April 1918 – an important turning point in Irish history but one often overlooked.
Monday, July 4, 2022
The Land for the People?
Season 2, Ep. 2
1923 saw a new Land Act, with greater focus on the re-distribution of land as well as the Agricultural Commission which informed policy for what was the major industry of the new Irish Free State. This episode is on debates on agrarian policy within the Irish labour movement, particularly within the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union, the main union for agricultural employees, and looks at it from the bottom-up - foregrounding the words of local activists by drawing on branch resolutions, a survey of the branches, and a essay competition which ran in the pages of the union's newspaper. There was strong support for continuing compulsory tillage, but divergences of opinion around land division, collective ownership and cottage gardens. There will also be a quick look at the agrarian writings of James Connolly.
Thursday, June 2, 2022
Red Flag in Kilmallock
Season 2, Ep. 1
In this episode after Truce & Treaty Irish separatists have assumed control over much of the country and we go to Ireland's dairying heartland and to the winter farm strikes of the winter of 1921-'22. Very different conditions to the harvest farm strike we looked at in episode one of season one, not only seasonality we are now in an economic slump and things are getting more militant: kidnappings, sabotage, the take-over of Mallow Mills by its workforce and the role of the Irish Republican Army in policing industrial disputes.