Archive for the ‘Radio and Podcasts’ Category

The history week ahead…on tv and radio: Saturday 24 October- Friday 30 October

24 October 2009

18.05: Documentary on One: The Starry Frame (letters from Irish migrants in Australia, 1849), RTÉ Radio 1

19.00: Fifty years of Music in DublinRTÉ Lyric FM.

19.30: The Scarlet Pimpernel, BBC 4 tv

20.30: Glortha an Ghorta: Great Irish Famine Folklore, RTÉ Radio 1.

21.00: Terror! Robespierre and the French Revolution, BBC 4 tv

13.15: Pobal ar Aire! Gluaiseacht Chearta Sibhialta na Gaeltachta 1969-2009, RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta

18.30: Reeling in the years 1997, RTÉ 1 tv

19.00: Reeling in the years 1998, RTÉ 1 tv

19.00: Not Forgotten: The Men Who Wouldn’t Fight, Channel 4

19.00: Talking History, Newstalk

20.00: A Tale of Two Britains (Britain in the 1930s), BBC 4 tv

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The history week ahead…on tv and radio: Saturday 17 October- Friday 23 October

17 October 2009


2.20pm: Waterloo (film), BBC 2.

7.oopm: Fifty years of Music in Dublin, RTÉ Lyric FM.

8.30pm: The Bitter End: Ghandi (final part), BBC2, tv.

8.30pm: Glortha an Ghorta: Great Irish Famine Folklore, RTÉ Radio 1.

12.45 pm: The Unsinkable Titanic, More 4.


13:30 A Short History of Ireland Omnibus, BBC Radio Ulster.

6.05 pm: Conspiracy: Irish Political Trials under the Union (part 4 of 4), RTÉ Radio 1.

6.30pm: Reeling in the years, RTÉ 1.

7.00pm: Reeling in the years, RTÉ 1.

7.00 pm: Talking History, Newstalk.

8.00pm: Séiplínigh na Nlmirceach, TG4. Read more

The history week ahead…on tv and radio

10 October 2009

tv Saturday:

15:35 The Battle of Britain (film, not documentary), RTE 2, tv

18:30 Kevin McCloud’s Grand Tour of Europe (part 4), Ch 4

19:00 The Pre-Raphaelites: Victorian Revolutionaries, BBC 4, tv

20:00 Archive on 4: When Bailey Met Warhol, BBC 4, radio


13:30 A Short History of Ireland Omnibus, BBC Radio Ulster

18:05 Conspiracy: Irish Political Trials (part 3 of 4), RTE 1, radio

19:00 The Genius of Charles Darwin, CH 4

19:00 Talking History

21:00 Kevin McCloud’s Grand Tour of Europe, (conclusion), CH 4


15:45 A History of Private Life (part 11 of 30), BBC 4, radio

19:00 Saving Britain’s Past (history of Brick Lane in London), BBC 2, tv

18:55 A Short History of Ireland, BBC Radio Ulster

21:35 Who Do You Think You Are? (this week’s guest is Fionnula Flanagan), RTE 1, tv


15:45 A History of Private Life (12 of 30), BBC 4, radio

18:55 A Short History of Ireland, BBC Radio Ulster


15:45 A History of Private Life (13 of 30), BBC 4, radio

18:55 A Short History of Ireland, BBC Radio Ulster


15:45 A History of Private Life (14 of 30), BBC 4, radio

18:55 A Short History of Ireland, BBC Radio Ulster

21:30 Cowboys: The Alamo, TG4

22:00 An Bothar go dti an Whitehouse (documentary about James Michael Curley, American politician and son of Irish immigrants), TG4


15:45 A History of Private Life (13 of 30), BBC 4, radio

18:55 A Short History of Ireland, BBC Radio Ulster

20:30 Cowboys: Billy the Kid (travel/documentary hosted by Machan Magan, followed by 1973 Western, Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid), TG4

20:30 The Way We Worked (1st in new series on work in Ireland after WWII), RTE 1, tv

‘The Lost Souls of Ireland’ and the Historian’s Conscience

8 October 2009

Contributed by Gráinne McEvoy

StatueLast Thursday morning I tuned in to BBC Radio 4 to hear a report by Ruth McDonald on victims of Irish clerical and institutional abuse now living in Great Britain. ‘The Lost Souls of Ireland’ dealt with the response of an estimated 10,000 emigrant survivors to the release of the Ryan Report last May. Numerous voices in the national dialogue following the report have asserted its historical significance. Patsy McGarry, Irish Times religious affairs correspondent, has described it as ‘a milestone’ which casts a ‘complete new light on Irish history in the twentieth century’.

These assertions of the report’s historical importance have given me pause for thought, particularly in regards to my own field of interest – Irish migration history. The recent prominence of survivor action groups in Britain appears to confirm anecdotal evidence that many of the children who suffered neglect and abuse in Irish institutions left the country as soon as they were old enough and had the means to do so. In listening to McDonald’s interviews with survivors of clerical abuse and their English-born children, I also found that elements of their stories resonated with themes and problems familiar to those of us interested in the recent history of the Irish in Britain. Read More

Talking about history

8 October 2009

By Kevin O’Sullivan

Miriam O'CallaghanIn spite of all of my best intentions in compiling this week’s guide to history on television and radio (it was my turn, sorry), I managed to miss the appearance of Diarmaid Ferriter, Professor of Irish History at UCD, and Catriona Crowe, Head of Special Projects at the National Archives, on the Miriam O’Callaghan meets… programme on RTÉ Radio 1 on Sunday morning (4 October). The two spoke about their friendship, their careers, what history means to them and what it gives to the wider community and ended with a rather interesting musical choice: Ding Dong Denny O’Reilly’s alternative history of the Famine, ‘The potatoes aren’t looking the best’. If you didn’t catch it, you can listen below, or head over to iTunes to download the programme on podcast.

Part I:

Part II:

Bring out your events!

28 September 2009

Billy_Clark_town_crier_NantucketThis post is really just an effort to highlight our Events page.  We aim to provide a central listing for all kinds of history events taking place in Ireland.  Please oh please send us your events.  Email us at  As you can see on the Events page, we usually put in a single sentence which also serves as a hyperlink to a website for the actual event.  So far in October there are conferences on Monism in Belfast, the history of New Age religion in Maynooth, the War of Independence in Dublin, and the Ulster plantation, also in Dublin.  Finally the Roscrea conference is on Irish Saints and the Liturgy.  I’m sure there’s more going on.  We are happy to add exhibitions, radio and tv programmes and public lectures.  (Have a look at Lisa’s tv and radio guide for the week while you’re at it.)  So bring out your events, we want your events!

Some things for the weekend

18 September 2009

By Kevin O’Sullivan

Famine Eviction SceneA couple of things to keep you distracted for the weekend. Well, five minutes of it at least.

The best history-related writing I happened upon this week came not from the stack of foreign aid books and articles that I’ve been (enjoyably) making my way through, but from a piece in The Economist on the privatisation of the space industry:

The past, despite the disclaimer often found on advertisements for financial products, often can be a guide to the future.

How apt for our own ‘interesting’ times.

My second discovery is something that I’m sure those of you with a superior knowledge of nineteenth century Irish history caught up with a long time ago, but, hey, it’s new to me. On the 10 September podcast from Nature magazine, there is a discussion of the newly revealed genetic sequence of Phytophthora infestans, more commonly known as potato blight, in which one of the report’s authors Sophien Kamoun describes how the disease originated in wild potatoes in Mexico, made its way somehow into North America before being brought to Europe and Ireland, with all of its disastrous consequences. You can listen to the discussion at the start of the podcast below or read about it here.


Tales of the Irish cowboy

29 August 2009

By Juliana Adelman

cowboy I happened to catch RTE radio 1’s ‘Farm Week’ this morning as I was up at the usual toddler waking time on Saturday.  For those of you lucky enough to be in bed or simply not tuned in, it’s definitely worth downloading as a podcast.  Donna O’Sullivan interviewed men and women from a few Cork families who all ended up in a remote part of Oregon as cattle and sheep herders during the 1950s.  The interviewees recalled the glory of the scenery, the freedom of sleeping under the stars and, of course, being saddle sore.  It was  fascinating and sounded more like a story from the nineteenth century than only fifty years ago.  Truly the Wild West: one of the interviewees revealed that she got a chance at a job only because two local men got into a fight at a dance, and one of them was taken out to the desert and never seen again.  A pretty amazing emigration story and well worth a listen.

Picture credit: Cowboy herding cattle along Oregon State Highway 31, west of Silver Lake, Oregon. December 18, 2004.

© 2004 Matthew Trump source

History-making Historians

31 July 2009

By Kevin O’Sullivan

Velvet Revolution 1989What happens when the historians are part of the history? Timothy Garton Ash, the Oxford-educated, self-styled writer of the ‘history of the present’, has just re-published his book, The File: A Personal History, the story of coming to terms with the Stasi informers and secret police who kept his file from the time he arrived in Berlin in the late 1970s. His story is an interesting one. Drawn to Berlin initially to work on Hitler for a postgraduate degree, he rubbed shoulders with some of Eastern Europe’s most prominent dissidents, writing and commenting on the processes leading up to the velvet revolutions of 1989 and beyond.

He also makes for a fascinating interviewee, as his recent conversation with Philip Dodd on the BBC Radio 3’s Night Waves shows – in 45 minutes they manage to get through 1970s Berlin, Orwell, Iran, Obama and American foreign policy, the velvet revolutions, historical psychology and much more. Here on Pue’s Occurrences we are fans of interviewing those who work in the Irish history industry, with plenty more great interviews lined up for the coming months (had to get the plug in), but I thought on this occasion, you might like to hear from someone farther afield. You can listen to the programme below, or click here to download the mp3 to bring it with you.

Hat tip (again) to Speechification for archiving this show and bringing it to my attention.

GAA 125

9 July 2009

By Kevin O’Sullivan

Louth All-Ireland Champions 1957The GAA is 125 years old this year, in case you hadn’t noticed. (If you genuinely hadn’t, welcome back. The weather’s been pretty good, but the economy’s gone to the dogs, Bertie’s gone, everyone’s waiting for the day they can say ‘back in NAMA’, Kilkenny are perpetual All-Ireland champions and Louth still can’t get past the Leinster quarter-finals.) Though certainly not without its faults, the GAA is one of the successes of modern Ireland: for its vision and application in the construction of Croke Park; in its continued growth and consolidation in parishes and local communities across Ireland.

At the heart of that success is a strong awareness of the organisation’s history. The GAA’s culture and tradition are, though its grassroots followers might balk at the term, very much part of ‘the brand’. But unlike the comfort you’re supposed to get from watching montages of old Guinness, Persil or Hibernian Aviva ads, there is something a little deeper to the admirably wide-ranging analysis coming out of Croke Park. Maybe it’s something in the canal water or just the influence of all those schoolteachers. It’s certainly a far cry from the conference I attended at Croke Park in 2005 which was just the wrong blend of history Read More