Sirs, I address this warning to you, the aristocracy of industry in this city, because, like all aristocracies, you tend to grow blind in long authority, and to be unaware that you and your class and its every action are being considered and judged day by day by those who have power to shake or overturn
the whole social order, and whose restlessness in poverty today is making our industrial civilisation stir like a quaking bog.
-Jim Larkin’s Speech to the Askwith Inquiry, 4 October 1913
This is a great project from Dublin Community Television (DCTV) and something we’re more than proud to support. It’s undeniable that the ‘decade of centenaries’ we have entered will be a contentious one politically. Already we’ve seen the Labour Party using their annual Connolly commemoration to preach austerity this year for example, and the tug-of-war ahead for the legacy of 1916 will be fascinating to watch, if not tragic.
The lockout has always sat awkwardly for many in the story of revolutionary Ireland, yet it is an incredibly important part of the story. Out of the lockout emerged the Citizen Army of course, but the lockout itself emerged out of a growing sense of class stuggle in Dublin at the time. The likes of the Jacobs strike of 1912, which saw three thousand women workers at Jacob’s factory withdraw their labour.
If 2016 will be about Enda Kenny, Bertie Ahern and their sort observing tanks roll down O’Connell Street, what will 2013 be about? If we want to have a say in how the event is commemorated, it’s time to get moving.