Anthony Roche On the evening of Saturday, April 23, 2016, a group gathered inside the always chilly precincts of Kilmainham Gaol in Dublin. They were there to attend the opening night of Signatories, a play about the seven men who had signed the Proclamation of the Irish Republic. The play consisted of eight monologues by contemporary Irish writers; seven about the signatories, and the eighth, by Emma Donoghue, about Elizabeth O'Farrell, the woman who brought the surrender order from Pádraig Pearse. Signatories was UCD's contribution to the commemoration of the Rising and all eight of the playwrights were UCD graduates: Donoghue, Thomas Kilroy, Hugo Hamilton, Frank McGuinness, Rachel Feehily, Eilis Ni Dhuibhne, Joseph O'Connor, and Marina Carr, whose contribution was in the voice of Thomas MacDonagh. The college had shown particular interest in MacDonagh during this commemorative year: he, too, not only acquired a BA from UCD but taught there in the Department of English right up to the Rising. MacDonagh was also working, at the end, on a book titled Literature in Ireland: Studies Irish and Anglo-Irish, based on lectures he had given at the university and which was to form the basis of a course there
New Hibernia Review – Center for Irish Studies at the University of St. Thomas
Published: May 30, 2017
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