Irish women’s sexual lives are laid Bare in radical and revealing compilation

Irish women’s sexual lives are laid Bare in radical and revealing compilation

NON- Fiction; Bare: Irish Women’s Sexual Fantasies; Edited by Julianne Daly; Liberties Press, €14.60

Throughout modern Irish history, the female body has been a site of cultural contestation. For the cultural nationalists, it was Ireland personified. From Hibernia to the Sean Bhean Bhocht, the colonised island was imagined as a woman who needed saving. For the conservatives charged with creating the newly independent state in the 1920s, meanwhile, the very stability of the country depended on the morality of Irish woman. Her sexual and spiritual role in the future prosperity of the nation was even enshrined into law. The 1937 Constitution made special provision to recognise a woman’s “life within the home” and, through which her support for the “common good” of the state.

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