Rugby and the Political Landscape

Rugby and the Political Landscape

This week will delve into the political context surrounding rugby in Ireland, including the growth of the sport despite the ban on foreign games, the link between Connacht and the diaspora, and the sport as an All-Ireland one–fielding a united team of players from north and south, catholic and protestant through the height of the troubles, peace process, and beyond. Special guests will include former player Willie Anderson, and musician and writer of “Ireland’s Call”, Phil Coulter.

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Presented by Eamonn Molloy and Justin Hickey

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Featured Speakers: 

  • Willie Anderson, Former Irish International Rugby Player
  • Phil Coulter, Musician and Composer of “Ireland’s Call”
  • Eamonn Molloy, Education and Learning, Connacht Rugby and the Irish Rugby Football Union
  • Justin Hickey, Program Director, Notre Dame Rugby
  • Lisa Caulfield, Director of the Global Centre at Kylemore

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Ireland's Call: A Story in Rugby and Unity

Presented by Michael Lydon

Dr. Michael Lydon (NUI, Galway) provides the historical context surrounding the song “Ireland’s Call”, including the ban on “foreign games”, rugby as a sport that included the whole of Ireland, and the development of the IRFU flag and anthem.

Willie Anderson: Ulster and Ireland Rugby Legend

Presented by Willie Anderson

Former Ulster and Irish rugby player Willie Anderson gives a brief overview of his time playing rugby during an era fraught with political tensions where the sport provided an even stronger sense of camaraderie between players of all religions, races, and backgrounds.

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