Skip navigation

UCD Search


Scholarcast 2: The Boy as National Hero: The legacy of Cúchulainn

The Boy as National hero


This lecture is focused primarily on the pre-revolutionary period in Ireland and looks at the cultural and visual significance of the image of the boy within Irish nationalist discourse. Particular emphasis is placed on how the figure of Cúchulainn was adapted (especially by Patrick Pearse) to create an idea of modern revolutionary male citizenship. Consideration is also given to the 'after-life' of Cúchulainn and some of the changing meanings and representations attached to Cúchulainn within contemporary culture.

Elaine Sisson

Dr Elaine Sisson is Senior Lecturer in Visual Culture at Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology and IADT Fellow at the newly established Graduate School of Creative Arts and Media, Dublin. She completed a PhD at the School of English, Trinity College Dublin. Her work addresses the importance of the visual in reconsidering textual biases within traditional literary and historiographical analysis. She is the author of Pearse’s Patriots: St Enda’s and the Cult of Boyhood(Cork University Press, 2004 repr. 2005) and co-editor of Made in Ireland? Visualising Modernity 1922-1992.


Series edited by: PJ Mathews.
Scholarcast original theme music by: Padhraic Egan, Michael Hussey and Sharon Hussey.
Recording, audio editing, photography and development by: John Matthews, Brian Kelly, Vincent Hoban &
Niall Watts at UCD IT Services, Media Services.
Consultant Producer: Clíodhna Ní Anluain, RTÉ

Need help listening or subscribing to Scholarcast episodes? Please refer to our 'How to use this podcast page' for help.