Mary McAleese on Irish & British Relations: a Century of Change

On April 11, one day after the 18th anniversary of the signing of the Good Friday Agreement, I had the pleasure of sitting with Professor Mary McAleese to talk to her about her term as President of Ireland (1997-2011), her assessment of Anglo-Irish relations over the last 100 years, and her views on the future of those relationships in the context of the Brexit debate. With well over one hundred students, staff and guests in attendance in the beautiful Waldegrave Drawing Room at St Mary’s University, Prof. McAleese shared her experiences and ideas about the Rising centenary, developments of Irish confidence, the position of Irish people in the UK, and ‘that’ rugby match.

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