As the 1916 centenary year draws to a close, I’ll be discussing my novel The Rising of Bella Casey as part of a panel discussion entitled “Remembering the Rising” at the Source Library and Arts Centre in Thurles, Co Tipperary, this Thursday evening (November 24) at 7pm. The event is free and open to the public.
The discussion will consider 1916 both as it is remembered and how it is re-imagined, and will feature novelist Marita Conlon McKenna, author of Rebel Sisters – based on the lives of the Gifford sisters – and Queen’s University historian Dr Fearghal McGarry, whose The Rising, Ireland Easter 1916 appeared earlier this year.
The events of Easter Week 1916 appear in the opening of The Rising of Bella Casey although they are more backdrop than central to the plot of the novel which foregrounds the life of Bella Casey, the sister of playwright Sean O’Casey. O’Casey, of course, did much to establish the revolutionary period of Irish history in the dramatic imagination with his Dublin trilogy, Shadow of a Gunman, Juno and the Paycock and The Plough and the Stars, which have become part of the national canon.