Citizens: Lockout 1913-2013

Citizens: Lockout 1913-2013

Sat 6pm

Citizens Lockout 1913 to 2013 Saturday 17 August 2013

Episode 2 - Bread & Roses 1913

Episode 2 - Bread & Roses 1913

By 1913 the elements and characters that dominate the six month Lockout are coming in place with the growing strength of Larkin's new Irish union the Irish Transport and General Workers Union. The Cork-born businessman Martin Murphy dominates Irish enterprise as President of the Dublin Chamber of Commerce and leader of the Dublin Employers Federation but his energy is also focused on blocking the proposed Hugh Lane Municipal Gallery which results in a cultural war between him and poet W.B Yeats as author Ciaran Wallace details.

Actor Barry McGovern depicts Murphy through his lengthy letters to his own newspaper the Irish Independent where he attacks both Lane and the proposed gallery while we hear WB Yeats' response in his poem September 1913. Murphy's biographer Thomas Morrissey brings us into the mind of the man who refused a knighthood in 1907 and leads, not just the employers in 1913, but the newly launched Rathmines and Rathgar Musical Society.

Ruth Dudley Edwards shares her critical take on the leadership of Larkin, James Connolly, Larkin's second in command, and Constance Markievicz, “Larkin was a terrible leader. He was utterly ruled by emotion. He didn’t know where he was taking people. Connolly wasn’t much better.” Labour historian Francis Devine brings to life the songs and stories of the labour movement from 1911-1913 including ballads written by Connolly himself and the song which became the anthem of the workers 'Who Fears to Wear the Red Hand Badge'.

To a Shade WB Yeats read by Michael Gallen

To a Shade WB Yeats read by Michael Gallen

Its Murphy! contemporary poem read by Francis Devine

Its Murphy! contemporary poem read by Francis Devine

A six part documentary series narrating the events that led to the landmark labour versus capital conflict in Dublin in 1913, exploring the leaders on both sides and questioning the legacy of Lockout 1913 for Ireland today.

Starts August 10th at 6pm on RTÉ Radio 1.

Citizens: Lockout 1913-2013 brings to life a city where 100,000 people lived in one bedroom tenements and a conflict dominated by big personalities like union leader Jim Larkin and industrialist William Martin Murphy. But while Larkin's statute dominates O'Connell Street today the lockout was a crushing defeat for the city's workers and in 1914 it was Murphy not Larkin who was honoured.

Historian Diarmaid Ferriter, Professor of Modern Irish History at UCD, says with the Lockout 'we tend to read history backwards' and see 1913 through the prism of 1916. This series starts at 1900 with the visit of Queen Victoria to Dublin and the emerging labour, nationalist and suffrage movements. Its key characters are not just Larkin and Martin Murphy, but socialist James Connolly and women activists in the Women’s Workers Union including Larkin's sister Delia and Constance Markievicz.  'This was one where it was workers on one side and employers on the other' says Lockout historian Padraig Yeates. 'If Larkin's achievement was to unite workers for better conditions, Murphy's achievement was to unite employers, both catholic and protestant. It was a battle of personalities'.

The series features leading historians on the period including Mary Daly, James Curry, Emmet O'Connor, Felix Larkin, Leeann Lane, Lauren Arrington as well as Diarmaid Ferriter and Padraig Yeates and includes contributions from the descendants of Connolly, Larkin, Martin Murphy and Markievicz as well as dramatic readings by actors Barry McGovern, Donna Dent, Stephen Murray and playwright Peter Sheridan. Contemporary leaders also share their views about the legacy of the Lockout including Minister for Education Ruairi Quinn, IBEC leader Danny McCoy, Irish Congress of Trade Unions leader David Begg, Former Fine Gael cabinet Minister Gemma Hussey, SIPTU Vice-President Patricia King and Senator Ivana Bacik.  Author Thomas Morrissey 

With many thanks to RTÉ Libraries and Archives

Citizens: Lockout 1913-2013 is an Athena Media production for RTÉ Radio 1 made with the support of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.

Producer/presenter: Helen Shaw

Audio editor: Amy Millar

Original music: Michael Gallen



Helen Shaw


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