Local History by Seán Beattie

Folklore, Research, Uncategorized

Article on Seán Ó’hEochaidh’s Field Diaries by Lillis Ó Laoire

Photo of Lillis O'Laoire

Dr. Lillis Ó’ Laoire, NUIG

Seán Ó’hEochaidh was one of Ireland’s greatest folklore collectors and he worked for the Irish Folklore Commission in Donegal. Dr. Lillis Ó Laoire, professor in Irish in the School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures, NUIG, has carried out extensive research on his diaries.

In this article, he highlights references to women and how they impacted on Ó hEochaidh’s work. The diaries offer a unique insight into rural life in south Donegal; there are references to local customs and interesting personalities are encountered.

The title of the article is “Tá cuid de na mná blasta/Some Women Are Sweet Talkers”: Representations of Women in Seán Ó hEochaidh’s Field Diaries for the Irish Folklore Commission, and was first published in the Estudios Irlandes Journal of Irish Studies in 2017 (Estudios Irlandeses, Special Issue 12.2, 2017, pp. 122-138).

In the abstract for the article, Ó Laoire states This article discusses representations of women in diaries written by  Seán Ó hEochaidh as part of his work as a field collector for the Irish Folklore Commission (1935-1971). Focusing on a number of well-described events and characters, the article reveals the collector’s attitude to women as they emerge from his writing. It also shows how women could help or hinder his collecting work. The disparities of the lives of a number of working women from Donegal during the period are also highlighted.”

To read the full text of the article, click on the link below:

https://www.estudiosirlandeses.org/2017/10/ta-cuid-de-na-mna-blastasome-women-are-sweet-talkers-representations-of-women-in-sean-o-heochaidhs-field-diaries-for-the-irish-folklore-commission/ (Estudios Irlandeses, Special Issue 12.2, 2017, pp. 122-138; copyright (c) 2017 Lillis Ó Laoire.)


  1. Mary Bernadette McFeeley McCann Stone

    I really enjoyed this!

  2. Thomas Cannon

    Many thanks, Seán, for this wonder article. It’s a treasure! Tom


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