2020 Summer School


Parnell Summer School 2020:  Cancellation

The Parnell Society has decided to cancel its Summer School this year owing to the Coronavirus crisis.  We know this will be a source of disappointment to our regular participants and regret any inconvenience caused.  However, we feel that it is the prudent course of action in the interests of public safety.

Organised by the Parnell Society, the first Parnell Summer School was held at Avondale in 1991, the centenary of the death of Charles Stewart Parnell. The School has taken place every year since then.  The activities of the Society will resume as soon as the situation allows.  Our next scheduled event will be the annual Ivy Day Commemoration at Glasnevin on Sunday 4 October.  Please watch this space for further information and details of other events including the 2021 Summer School.


The Parnell Society acknowledge the support of 

Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht


and Coillte Teoranta.


Fees and daily rates for attendance at the Summer School to follow.

Register for the 2020 Summer School Now

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Final Programme

10.00 Dr Jennifer Redmond (Maynooth University)“Venturing beyond borders: Irish Women’s Emigration and the ‘Problematic’ Diaspora of the 19th and 20thcenturies’


11.00 Dr Darragh Gannon (Queen’s University Belfast)

‘Where in the world was the Irish Revolution? Power, politics, and the place of global commemoration’

Chair: Ronan McGreevy, Irish Times


14.00 Panel on Irish society and the wider world in 2019

Chaired: Sinéad O’Carroll of TheJournal.ie and Virgin TV

Dr Ebun Joseph (University College Dublin)

Donnah Vuma (University of Limerick)

Zak Moradi, Leitrim County hurler; Lory Meagher Cup winner 2019.



19.30 Evening entertainment: Screening of In the Name of Peace: John Hume in America followed by Q and A with filmmaker Maurice Fitzpatrick


Dr Daithí Ó Corráin (Dublin City University)’Keeping electoral promises: the opening of the first Dáil and the mission to Paris’

Dr Mary MacDiarmada (Dublin City University) ‘The foolish catchword of self-determination’: Art O’Brien and the London campaign for Irish independence, 1919 to 1921.

Dr Brian Murphy (Technological University, Dublin) ‘President Seán T. O’Kelly’s visit to the United States, 1959: A game-changer in Irish-American relations’.

Chair: Dr Will Murphy, Dublin City University



Dr. Gerard Keown (Historian and, diplomat, prev. Ambassador to Poland)
‘The Harp in the Orchestra of Nations: Reflections on the Beginnings of Irish Foreign Policy’



Afternoon field trip to Glencree Centre for Peace and Reconciliation

10.00 Keynote Lecture: Dr David McCullagh (RTÉ) – Éamon de Valera

Chair: Prof Pauric Travers


11.30 Dr Róisín Healy (NUI Galway) ‘Ireland and Poland: historical symmetries and asymmetries’



Dr Sarah-Anne Buckley (NUI Galway) – Child welfare in Ireland in a global perspective, 1919-2009

Prof Pat Dolan (NUI Galway) ‘Corporal punishment in Irish schools: Unfinished business’

10.00 Panel on the centenary of the Department of Foreign Affairs from the DIFP team, Royal Irish Academy

Dr Michael Kennedy – ‘“The Ambassador’s cine camera” – the diplomatic career of Ambassador Denis Holmes through his home movies’

Dr John Gibney – ‘Irish diplomats and the end of the sixties: diplomatic reports from the US, 1969’



11.30 Panel Discussion – ‘Beyond Brexit? Ireland and the wider world’

Chair: Elaine Loughlin, The Irish Examiner Political Correspondent
Saoirse McHugh (Green Party)
Barry Andrews (Fianna Fáil)

Senator Ian Marshall (Independent)

Visitor Information

Accommodation: a variety of accommodation is available in the Avoca/Rathdrum area visit: http://www.discoverireland.ie/where-to-stay/

Venues: The Woodenbridge Hotel, Avoca, the  venue during the Summer School.

Public Transport: Trains and buses to Rathdrum and Arklow. See irishrail.ie or buseireann.ie

Lectures begin each day at 10.00 a.m.

Lunch will be served from 12.30 – 2.30 p.m.

A variety of entertainment is provided including the Summer School Gala Dinner.

Previous Schools

Images from the 2016 Summer School

Images from the 2011 Summer School

Images from the 2010 Summer School

Images from the 2009 Summer School

The 2009 Parnell Summer School was the Society’s eighteenth annual Summer School. Images below feature some of the highlights of the week including:

The official unveiling of two commerative seats, dedicated to two former founding members of the Society – Marie Toibin and Mairin Lindsay, by US Ambassador, Dan Rooney;

Guest speakers including Dairmaid Ferriter UCD, Christy Cooney GAA President, Michael O’Muircheartaigh, Broadcaster, Robert Fitzpatrick – CEO Odyssey, Jennifer Kelly and Tom Hunt.

Launch of two books from UCD Press – Words of the Dead Chief (eds, Donal McCartney and Pauric Travers); and J.J. Horgan (ed.), From Parnell to Pearse, by Mr Martin Mansergh, T.D.

Plus a review of the on-going redevelopment of the ‘Big Shed’ by the OPW at Avondale House.