In this episode Naomi O’Leary and Tim Mc Inerney hear the voices of women who lived through a profound social transformation in Ireland: the coming of electricity. The ability to turn on a light or boil a kettle with just a switch came relatively late to large parts of Ireland, part of an ambitious project by the young state to economically transform Ireland and help it take its place among the nations of the earth. We explore the ways in which this changed people’s lives, from the design of their houses to the food they ate, and how this transformation continues to inform social ideas about domestic work to this day. Featuring insights from design historian Sorcha O’Brien of Kingston University, the voices of ordinary women from around the Irish countryside who describe how electricity changed their lives, and material from the ESB archives.
Check our our full interview with Dr O’Brien over at: https://www.patreon.com/posts/43027994
We are grateful to the Electric Irish Homes project and to the ESB for their help. Archive clips are copyright ESB and can be found at https://esbarchives.ie/.
Special thanks to Molly May O’Leary for suggesting the idea for the episode.
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