The shell of the G.P.O. on Sackville Street (later O'Connell Street), Dublin in the aftermath of the 1916 Rising

Why was there an Easter Rising?

Was the rising undemocratic? Two and a half years later, in December 1918, Irish nationalists voted overwhelmingly for the Sinn Féin party which was committed to the ideals of the Easter Rising. The result, a month later, in January 1919; The First Dáil. This provided retrospective vindication for the Rising. But at the time, in Easter week 1916, it was an action taken in defiance of public opinion.

Professor Michael Laffan

As part of the History Hub.ie podcast series Professor Michael Laffan (UCD) explores the national and international circumstances of Ireland before Easter Week, 1916. He looks at the reasons for the Rising from the perspectives of public opinion, popularity and democracy and considers how one might now appraise the Rising. Professor Laffan’s course The Irish Revolution is available as a podcast series on iTunes and via RSS feed. Just follow the links below.

Professor Laffan is the author of The Resurrection of Ireland: the Sinn Féin Party, 1916-1923 (Cambridge Press) and The Partition of Ireland, 1911-1925 (Historical Association of Ireland).

Listen to Why was there an Easter Rising?

Image: ‘The shell of the G.P.O. on Sackville Street (later O’Connell Street), Dublin in the aftermath of the 1916 Rising’. Source: National Library of Ireland on The Commons (Life goes on…Uploaded by russavia) [see page for license], via Wikimedia Commons