Today the Irish revolutionary, Muriel McSwiney is largely forgotten in Ireland. However, in 1920 she was an internationally renowned figure, given the role she played in the Irish War of Independence.

This podcast, the second of two, tells the fascinating story of McSwiney's life. Part I (available here) looked at her early years. Born in Cork in 1892, her family was one of the richest in her native city. However, she turned her back on the life of privilege this offered her. In 1915 she became an active member of the Irish republican movement and its struggle for independence from the British Empire.

Picking up the story in 1920, this episode looks at her life during the War of Independence. In August 1920 her husband, the republican Lord Mayor of Cork, Terence McSwiney began what would become the longest hunger strike in Irish history. This would attract the world's media casting Muriel into the spotlight and in many ways changing her life forever.

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The second part of the show looks at her later life. After the hunger strike came to an end in late October 1920, Muriel had little time to recuperate from this traumatic experience. She would travel to the USA on two occasions becoming the first woman to receive the Freedom of New York. Back in Ireland, she was involved in the Irish Civil War before moving to the continent where she was increasingly involved with the French communist party. The show concludes with a look at her somewhat tragic personal life.

Created by Fin Dwyer, “This Week in Irish History” is Ireland's newest podcast series. Released weekly the podcast covers sieges, battles, assassinations, and scandals from the last thousand years of our history. You can subscribe to 'This Week in Irish History' today via iTunes or Spotify.

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* Fin Dwyer is a historian, author, and creator of The Irish History Podcast. Over the last eight years, he has been creating free podcasts which makes Irish history accessible to new audiences. He has covered diverse topics from the Middle Ages to the modern history.

He is currently focusing on the story of the Great Hunger. With over three million individual downloads, the show is one of Ireland's most popular podcasts. You can find his podcast on iTunes.

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Muriel McSwiney