“Up Sligo and Hurrah for the Far Downs: The Irish Roots of a Cold War Martyr”:
Sr. Maura Clarke, MM was one of four American women, three of them nuns, assassinated in El Salvador on December 2, 1980. Their identification with a poor people’s movement for land reform and human rights had put them in the cross-hairs of a government intent on eliminating dissent. Across two decades of service in Central America, Maura came to support popular movements against dictatorial regimes first in Nicaragua and then in El Salvador. As a child growing up in Rockaway, NY in the 1930s and 40s, Maura ingested her father’s stories of the IRB, the Irish Revolution and the Civil War and her mother’s tales of the discrimination and intimidation she faced growing up Catholic in Antrim. Maura drank in the songs of brave rebels and beloved martyrs. These shaped her ideas about freedom, liberation and rebellion, priming her understanding of the movements of which she was a part in Central America. Eileen Markey, author of A Radical Faith: The Assassination of Sr. Maura (Nation Books 2016) explores Maura’s Irish inheritance and its impact on her work a world away.
Introduction by Peter Quinn.
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