Trading Aprons for Arms: Republican Feminist Resistance in the North of Ireland


O’Keefe, Theresa. 2003. “Trading Aprons for Arms: Republican Feminist Resistance in the North of Ireland.” Resources for Feminist Research 30 (3): 39-64.

Author: Theresa O’Keefe


This article examines women's feminist resistance under the rubric of nationalism. It challenges the commonly held assumption that participation in nationalist movements is not self-serving for women, that fighting in a national liberation movement is detrimental to women's emancipation. It accounts for the rise of feminist-nationalist organizing in the North of Ireland, & its impact on the most radical element of Irish nationalism–republicanism. It argues that women's participation in the armed struggle empowered republican women to develop & advance a progressive, feminist agenda in conjunction with republicanism. This analysis is primarily based on interviews conducted with former female members of the Irish Republican Army.

Topics: Armed Conflict, National Liberation Wars, Combatants, Female Combatants, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Nationalism Regions: Europe, Northern Europe Countries: United Kingdom

Year: 2003

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