'To Speak of Easter Week' draws on oral history recordings relating to the 1916 Rising and its aftermath, recorded by Maurice O'Keeffe for the Irish Life and Lore Series. Based on the testimonies of the sons and daughters of the rebels, their granddaughters, grandsons and other close relatives, the book examines the very human legacy of Easter Week and looks at the different ways in which the family members have internalised and attempted to make sense of the actions of their antecedents. James Conlly's great-grandson and Eamonn Ceannt's grand-niece, Kathleen Clarke's niece and Con Colbert's nephew, among many others, trace their family history from 1916 through the generations down to the present, and examine the multi-layered meaning of their shared heritage. They tell their stories in their own unique voices, speaking of the pride and the glory, the grief and the agony, the loss and the very real burden of history.
Dr Helene O'Keeffe is currently working in St Angela's College Cork as a teacher of English and History and as school archivist. She has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History and English, and a PhD in History. -- Dr. Helene O'Keefe