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The global-historical significance of the 1916 Rising

imagesby Liam Ó Ruairc

In less than six months, the one hundredth anniversary of the 24-29 April 1916 Easter Rising will be commemorated throughout Ireland. What is striking about the so-called ‘Decade of Commemorations’ is how insular its outlook is: the 1912 Ulster Covenant, the 1916 Rising or the setting up of Northern Ireland are seen as a purely Irish phenomenon, divorced from global trends. As Edward W. Said once noted, while the Irish struggle was a ‘model of twentieth-century wars of liberation’, “it is an amazing thing that the problem of Irish liberation not only has continued longer than other comparable struggles, but is so often not regarded as being an imperial or nationalist issue; instead it is comprehended as aberration within the British dominions. Yet the facts conclusively reveal otherwise.”[1]  This article will argue that the significance of the 1916 Easter Rising lies less in its particular Irish context than in its world-historical impact. It will argue that its universal significance is to have hastened the end of the imperial and colonial age and made a significant contribution to the emancipation of colonial and racially subaltern groups globally.

From an anti-imperialist perspective, the 1916 Easter Rising was not simply part of a series of Irish rebellions against British rule – “six times during the past three hundred years” as the Proclamation puts it – but part of a Read the rest of this entry

Our current top ten

The ten most-viewed pieces on the blog are currently:

Women’s rights and the national struggle, 1916-1922 10,406
The burning of the British embassy – 40 years on 7,814
Politics and the rise of historical revisionism 6,001
Nationalisms and anti-nationalisms in Irish historiography 4,940
Saor Eire – Marxist and republican 3,548
The global-historical significance of the 1916 Rising 3,240
The New IRA and socialist-republicanism in the twenty-first century 3,229
The working class and the national struggle, 1916-1921 3,029
A history of the Provisional Republican Movement – part one of three 2,780
The Easter Rising and the ‘blood sacrifice’ 2,709

Top Ten Articles

Below are the ten most-viewed pieces on the blog (excluding Home Page/Archives):

Women’s rights and the national struggle, 1916-1922 More stats 9,820
The burning of the British embassy – 40 years on More stats 6,881
Politics and the rise of historical revisionism More stats 5,509
Nationalisms and anti-nationalisms in Irish historiography More stats 4,202
Saor Eire – Marxist and republican More stats 3,329
The global-historical significance of the 1916 Rising More stats 2,981
The New IRA and socialist-republicanism in the twenty-first century More stats 2,851
The working class and the national struggle, 1916-1921 More stats 2,781
A history of the Provisional Republican Movement – part one of three More stats 2,594
The Easter Rising and the ‘blood sacrifice’ More stats 2,512

 

Keeping score

The pieces below have all had over 1,000 views.  The most-viewed, on women and the national struggle from the Rising to the Treaty and civil war, has had almost 8,000 views; the one on the assault on Markievicz has had 1,025; the rest are part way in-between:

Women’s rights and the national struggle, 1916-1922

The burning of the British embassy – 40 years on

Politics and the rise of historical revisionism

Nationalisms and anti-nationalisms in Irish historiography

Saor Eire – Marxist and republican

The Easter Rising and the ‘blood sacrifice’

A history of the Provisional Republican Movement – part one of three

The working class and the national struggle, 1916-1921

The global-historical significance of the 1916 Rising

About

The New IRA and socialist-republicanism in the twenty-first century

Republicanism and the national independence struggle, 1916-21

Chapter 4: The Home Rule Crisis

The Rossville Street (Derry) Bloody Sunday murals

In review: Joost Augusteijn on Patrick Pearse

The lesbian fighters of 1916

The assault on Markievicz – as fact-free as it is malicious