The President of Ireland Michael D Higgins has commended the work of Associate Professor Sonja Tiernan, Head of History and Politics. At an address in the Irish Embassy in London to celebrate St Brigid's Day, President Higgins noted significant Irish women in history and described how he had depended on Tiernan's work to base his paper at the Trade Union Congress last year. He went on to testify that Sonja Tiernan is a 'brilliant historian’. Watch the video here (00:10:00)
Associate Professor Tiernan was invited into Leinster House - the Irish government buildings - to dine with members of the Votail 100 Committee, a committee of female Senators and Members of Irish Parliament on Wednesday 31st January. The following day, she was invited to address the conference ‘Representation, Gender and Politics: Past and Present: Reflecting on the Centenary of the Representation of the People Act 1918', organised by the Committee and the Royal Irish Academy. Associate Professor Tiernan presented women and politics from 1918 to 2018. The proceedings were recorded and will be screened on Oireachtas (National Parliament of Ireland) TV in the coming weeks.
In view of this high profile event, Associate Professor Tiernan was interviewed on Irish national Radio RTE on the Morning Ireland broadcast regarding the history of votes for women in Ireland. The interview is available as a podcast (01:56:00).
Following the proceedings in Dublin, Associate Professor Tiernan then travelled to Belfast where she was invited to address a special conference at PRONI (Public Records Office Northern Ireland) 'Suffrage and Society Then and Now: Reflections on the Representation of the People Act, 1918' on suffrage items she discovered in their manuscript collections. Her paper on 'The Revolt of the Daughters' described the founding of a women's suffrage organisation in Sligo and later in Manchester. The conference was recorded and will be released as a special YouTube information video.
While in Belfast, Associate Professor Tiernan was interviewed by BBC Northern Ireland radio as part of the Good Morning Ulster programme, regarding the current position of women in politics in Northern Ireland and Britain. She will be involved in many more events over this year, concentrating on the history of female suffrage, a topic she teaches to second year History students at Hope. She has been invited to address the British Irish Parliamentary Committee, set up as part of the Good Friday agreement, on Women in Politics later this year.