History@Newcastle Seminar Series presents Dr Gemma Clark: 'Arson in modern Ireland: Fire and protest since 1800’.

History@Newcastle Seminar Series presents Dr Gemma Clark

Friday, 29 August 2014, 10:00 am — Friday, 29 August 2014, 11:00 am

Location Auchmuty Library Cultural Collections, Callaghan campus, University of Newcastle, Australia
Contact Julie.McIntyre@newcastle.edu.au
RSVP Friday, 29 August 2014

You are invited to a free public lecture by Dr Gemma Clark: Arson in modern Ireland: Fire and protest since 1800.

Presented as part of the School of Humanities and Social Science's History@Newcastle Seminar Series, Dr Clark is from the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Sydney.

Dr Gemma ClarkDr Clark studied History at the Queen's College, Oxford, completing her doctorate in 2011. In October 2012, she took up her current position as postdoctoral research fellow at the Global Irish Studies Centre, UNSW Australia. Her research concerns violence and protest in modern Ireland. Cambridge University Press recently published her first monograph, Everyday Violence in the Irish Civil War.

Arson in modern Ireland: Fire and protest since 1800


The act of willfully setting fire to property with the intent to cause damage is not only a serious crime. In Ireland, the UK and elsewhere, arson is also a historically recognized protest tool. My postdoctoral project examines the range of social, political and military activists who have, since 1800, utilized fire—and the threat of one's property being burned—to enforce compliance with collective demands and communicate grievances. This paper presents my research so far, exploring the role played by arson in nineteenth-century rural unrest, and incendiarism as a feature of urban and sectarian conflict, particularly in Northern Ireland. I argue that the persistence of—typically non-lethal—arson as a protest tool, in Ireland, is explained by the distinctively Irish propensity to property damage, as well as the relative scarcity of brutality in modern Ireland, compared with mainland Europe and the USA.

All welcome. You don't need to RSVP for this event.

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