Wednesday 17 October 2018

Biography of Eva Gore-Booth to be launched

THE first dedicated biography of Eva Gore-booth (1870-1926), Irish poet and radical political activist, who was born in Lissadell House, is being launched in June. Written by Sonja Tiernan, a Lecturer in Modern History at Hope University, Liverpool, the book includes many references to The Sligo Champion, where Sonja discovered historical facts and key notes from the period of Eva's life.

Eva played a significant role in Anglo-irish politics; partaking in social justice campaigns, women's suffrage, trade union movements and was involved in establishing the British Labour Party. The book also provides much unknown insight into the early political career of Eva's older sister and flamboyant Irish nationalist, Constance, later known as Constance Markievicz.

It details Eva as a prolific and vibrant writer who enjoyed a place within W.B. Yeats' literary circle. Eva also established a Sligo branch of the Irish Women's Suffrage and Local Government Association.

She dramatically rejected her aristocratic heritage in the West of Ireland, eventually leaving her ancestral home of Lissadell House. She crossed class boundaries, moving to the industrial quarters of smog bound Manchester where she lived and worked amongst the poorest classes.

Gore-booth's experiences of militant pacifism during the Great War; her campaign for the reprieve Roger Casement's death sentence; her determination to organise the defeat of Winston Churchill and her unwavering struggle for Irish independence are explored.

Her pioneering work on behalf of those marginalised in society such as barmaids, circus performers, flower sellers and pit-brow lasses and her instrumental role in the fight for gender equality in the workplace is examined using meticulous research.

Eva is buried beside her long-term partner, Esther Roper, in Hampstead. Author Sonja Tiernan has been commended for her research in various archives for the book, and includes details sourced from old editions of The Sligo Champion. She previously edited an unpublished play by Eva Gore-booth.

'Eva Gore-booth - An Image of Such Politics' will be launched in Dublin on June 6th by Professor Diarmuid Ferriter.