Minister Madigan launches pop-up museum celebrating 100 years of women's participation in politics and public life
The Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan TD, today (14 December) officially opened ‘100 years of Women in Politics and Public Life 1918–2018’ – a Pop-Up Museum, exploring 100 years of women's participation in politics and public life.
This exciting exhibition shines a spotlight on the stories of very familiar and less well known women, who have contributed significantly to Irish political and public life over the past century – on the challenges they faced and the obstacles they overcame.
In opening the exhibition, Minister Madigan said: “I’d like you to imagine this for a moment: Only yesterday, 100 years ago, no woman in this room, solely because she was female, was permitted to run for election in this country. As a woman in Ireland, no matter how educated or intelligent, it could not be done. Even if that woman was bursting with ideas and reforming policies, she could not bring them forward. It wasn’t that she wouldn’t contemplate it, it was simply that she was prohibited to do so by law.”
The exhibition is a wonderful opportunity to encourage people of all ages to reflect upon the journey that this country has taken, particularly over the past 100 years. The exhibition, reflecting upon and celebrating all that has been achieved over the past 100 years but with an awareness of the considerable work remaining to be done, will encourage discussion, debate and analysis in ongoing exploration of our history.
Minister Madigan added: “I would like to express my deepest appreciation to Sinéad McCoole for her commitment to this project. I would also like to thank most sincerely the women and their families who shared their personal stories and memories – much of this previously unseen archive material – so generously.”
The exhibition was curated by the historian, Sinéad McCoole, and supported by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht as part of the Decade of Centenaries programme. The exhibition is open at the Coach House in Dublin Castle from today – the 100th anniversary of the historic 1918 general election – until Sunday 3 February 2019 and admission is free. It is also intended that the exhibition will travel to locations in Munster, Ulster and Connaught during 2019.