Added: June 7, 2014 – Last updated: November 7, 2015


Speaker: Joanna Bourke

Title: A ‘diabolical crime’

Subtitle: Sexual violence in Irish history

Conference: 20th Australasian Conference for Irish Studies (December 4-7, 2013)

Place: Sydney, Australia

Date: December 4, 2013

Language: English

Keywords: Modern History: 19th Century, 20th Century | European History: Irish History



* UNSWTV (Free Access)

* YouTube (Free Access)


Speaker: Joanna Bourke, Department of History, Classics and Archaeology, Birkbeck, University of London – Wikipedia

Abstract: »In 1837, the judge presiding over the Assizes in Kerry was annoyed and frustrated by the number of rape charges coming before his bench. He was dismissive: "I have often heard that Kerry cows and other cattle are less [worthy] than in other countries", he grumbled, adding that "these rape cases belong to the same genus; they are Kerry rapes, but I don’t think they could be considered as rapes elsewhere". What did he mean? How was violence understood in Ireland between 1830 and 1921? This lecture explores the meaning of sexual violence for individuals, communities, and the nation. In particular, Professor Bourke examines the common belief at the time that accusations of rape in Ireland served certain political and economic ends. Did the crime in Ireland differ from that committed across the Irish Sea? To what extent did its distinctive qualities tar Irishmen and women with being a riotous, ungovernable people?« (Source: Irish Studies Association of Australia and New Zealand)

Wikipedia: History of Europe: History of Ireland / History of Ireland (1801–1923), History of the Republic of Ireland