Saturday 3 December 2016

Casement, 'Black Diaries' and black arts

Published 23/04/2016 | 02:30

The commemoration held at Banna Strand, Co Kerry, to mark the centenary of the
capture of Roger Casement. Photo: Domnick Walsh
The commemoration held at Banna Strand, Co Kerry, to mark the centenary of the capture of Roger Casement. Photo: Domnick Walsh
Roger Casement

It remains one of the ironies of Roger Casement's foreshortened life that such a pioneering humanitarian should end up with his own human rights trampled. And by the same country whose reputation was enhanced by the work he carried out in its consular service.

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It remains one of the ironies of Roger Casement's foreshortened life that such a pioneering humanitarian should end up with his own human rights trampled. And by the same country whose reputation was enhanced by the work he carried out in its consular service.

The word 'black' is often linked with Casement, apropos the disputed 'Black Diaries' containing sexually explicit material. But black can also be taken to refer to the black arts from which he suffered - a smear campaign to tighten the noose at his neck. And here's another black: the deliberate steps taken by his interrogators to blacken his reputation internationally.

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