The Onlyness: Or the Irish Rebellion of 1916
By (author) Nora Connolly; By (author) John Killick; Introduction by Kirsty Lusk; Foreword by Sean Bell
This is a new publication of The Unbroken Tradition by activist and writer Nora Connolly, first published in 1918. Connolly shares her first-hand experience of the events leading up to the well-known Easter Week Irish revolution in 1916. Connolly shared the Republican and Socialist visions of her father, James Connelly, and was at the heart of the revolution that aimed to free Ireland. She offers a very vivid description of Ireland in 1916 and of what it meant to be Irish and under English oppression. Through her compelling writing, Connolly gives the reader an eye opening view of what she describes as ‘the real reasons’ behind the Irish antagonism towards England in the years that preceded World War One, by giving a thorough, personal and vivid account of the Easter Rising.
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Nora Connolly O’Brien (1893-1981) was born in Edinburgh and moved to Ireland with her family at the age of three. Following the ideas and political views of her father, Connolly became an influential Republican and Socialist writer and activist. After the Easter Week revolution in 1916, Connolly moved to Boston, where she wrote The Unbroken Tradition, in one of many attempts to gain support and recognition for the Irish Republic. As World War One started, American president Woodrow Wilson banned the book, as it was considered anti-British. Connolly returned to Ireland in disguise a year later and remained active in the Irish women’s Council which became an auxiliary of the Irish Volunteers in 1916, and fought in the War of Independence in 1919-1921. In 1922, Connolly and other members of the Irish women’s Council were imprisoned. In 1926 Connolly and her brother initiated the Workers Party of Ireland from 1926-7 and in the following years she operated Dublin’s Labour Party. In 1957, Connolly was nominated to the Seanad Eireann (Senate of Ireland) and she is technically listed as a Fianna Fail senator. Shortly before her death on the 17th of June 1981, she spoke at the 1980 Ardfheis of Sinn Fein.