The Republican Congress documentary series was broadcast on DCTV this
week. Altogether it took just over a year to get from the writing
stage to the final broadcast, so it was a pretty big undertaking for a
first time director. Thankfully I had a great crew working with me and
Donal Fallon (the presenter) has an excellent historical knowledge of
the period, and was able to fill in the blanks in my own knowledge.
I was attracted to the story of the Congress as it seems to me to be a
fairly overlooked part of our history. In fairness, the Congress only
really lasted as a distinct group for about 2 years, so it’s not
surprising that they’ve been overlooked. But these were the people who
went to Spain to defend Republican values at a time when the whole
country was supporting Franco. They faced an onslaught for their
position on this, which is ironic as Ireland is supposed to be a
republic, but they bravely persevered and I think history has judged
them to have taken the correct stand.
I also think that Congress has some resonances for society today.
There are concepts there such as broad tactical unity that could be
useful, and not getting hung up over tactical issues. Obviously it’s
not an exact parallel, but I think there are lessons there to be
learned, particularly for those on the left of the political spectrum.
It will be interesting to see what sort of feedback we get on the
series and whether anyone picks up on those ideas and tries to develop
them in our modern Ireland.
If you are looking for more info, updates or any upcoming screenings on this series check out their
facebook. Link as follows: https://www.facebook.com/RepConDoc