Beginning with the training of women for both combat and first aid in the lead up to the 1916 Rising in Ireland, A Revolver in the Medical Bag looks at women’s role in the 1916 Rising and their links to militant women throughout history. Referencing women such as Kathleen Lynn who was the chief medical officer of the Irish Citizens Army, giving first aid training to the members of the ICA and Cumman Na mBan while running weapons in the lead up to the Rising, and Helena Moloney who was also stationed at City Hall and said ‘it is part of our duty to knit and darn, but also to march and shoot, to obey orders in common with our brothers in arms’. This lecture performance explores the women’s training in care and war while considering the militancy of women historically and in the present. The work looks at how women take part in revolution and the lessons we can learn from the revolutionary women of the 1916 Rising and those who partake in contemporary struggles internationally.
This lecture performance was presented as part of Future Histories at KIlmainham Gaol, Dublin as part of the Ireland 2016 funded by The Arts Council of Ireland, curated by Aine Phillips and Niamh Murphy. It was also presented as part of Mapping Spectral Traces 8 The Place of the Wound at NUI, Maynooth, curated by Karen E. Till.