Patrick J. McDonaghApr 8, 2022
Gay and Lesbian Activism in the Republic of Ireland, 1973-93
Ireland’s 2015 Marriage Equality referendum is often framed as an incredible achievement just twenty years after sex between men was decriminalized (1993). But starting the story of gay and lesbian rights in Ireland in 1993 is misleading; the work and roots of the major reforms of the 1990s and twenty-first century are in the 1970s, when gay and lesbian activists formed organizations, lobbied for legislative change, and, perhaps most importantly, engaged in the essential work of shifting public perception of same-sex love. In his 2021 book Gay and Lesbian Activism in the Republic of Ireland, 1973-1993, Patrick McDonagh chronicles the work of the groups and individuals who helped shape Ireland into the state it is today. Join us as we chat about the isolation of being gay in a conservative Catholic nation, the fortitude of Ireland’s gay and lesbian groups, and the revolutionary possibilities of Saturday night discos.