Couldn’t have put it better meself *




It is a curious thing that many men seem to be unable to believe that any woman can embrace an ideal – accept it intellectually, feel it as a profound emotion, and then calmly decide to make a vocation of working for its realisation. They give themselves endless pains to prove that every serious thing a woman does (outside nursing babies or washing pots) is the result of being in love with some man, or disappointed in love of some man, or looking for excitement, or limelight, or indulging their vanity.

Irish feminist and Republican Helena Moloney, imprisoned for her part in the Easter Rising. As the LRB blog relates, while the male leaders  were executed, the British military governor considered the women were only  ‘silly girls’.


* to be read in conjunction with our previous post Women.




4 thoughts on “Couldn’t have put it better meself *

  1. What a terrific article in the LRB. Thanks for drawing my attention to it. I can really see those four women holding the roof of City Hall in Dublin. It reminded me – a reminder of how much things have changed? – of the Kurdish women soldiers in the front line fighting IS.

    1. Hi Dorothy
      yes, it was fascinating.It had never occurred to me that women were actually fighting in the uprising. Helena Moloney was quite a remarkable woman. I suppose it might have been one time when it was handy to be thought of as a “silly girl”.

  2. Thanks Gert. Don’t know if my Irish aunt who was a nurse at Anzio in WW iI knew of this heritage (I did not), but she carried it forward admirably. I am surprised that the Irish let the women in on the action — most countries don’t, even today (or just very recently).

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