1981 Irish Hunger Strike

The 1981 Irish hunger strike was the culmination of a five-year protest during The Troubles by Irish republican prisoners in Northern Ireland. The protest began as the blanket protest in 1976, when the British government withdrew Special Category Status for convicted paramilitary prisoners. In 1978, after a number of attacks on prisoners leaving their cells to "slop out", the dispute escalated into the dirty protest, where prisoners refused to leave their cells to wash and covered the walls of their cells with excrement. In 1980, seven prisoners participated in the first hunger strike, which ended after 53 days.

The second hunger strike took place in 1981 and was a showdown between the prisoners and the Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher. One hunger striker, Bobby Sands, was elected as a Member of Parliament during the strike, prompting media interest from around the world. The strike was called off after ten prisoners had starved themselves to death—including Sands, whose funeral was attended by 100,000 people. The strike radicalised nationalist politics, and was the driving force that enabled Sinn Féin to become a mainstream political party.

Read more about 1981 Irish Hunger Strike:  Background, Blanket and Dirty Protests, First Hunger Strike, Second Hunger Strike, Consequences, Commemorations

Other articles related to "1981 irish hunger strike, hunger, hunger strike, irish":

1981 Irish Hunger Strike - Commemorations
... See also Artistic reactions to the 1981 Irish hunger strike There are memorials and murals in memory of the hunger strikers in towns and cities ... Annual commemorations take place across Ireland for each man who died on the hunger strike, and an annual hunger strike commemoration march is held in Belfast each year ... A memorial to the men who died in the Irish Rebellion of 1798, the Easter Rising and the hunger strike stands in Waverley Cemetery, Sydney, Australia ...

Famous quotes containing the words hunger, irish and/or strike:

    ... hunger and cold, ill-health and pain are nothing. They pass. The thing that remains is ignorant criticism, well-meaning but futile advice, the contempt of a subordinate, the feelings of the underdog.
    Alice Foote MacDougall (1867–1945)

    Of all the characters I have known, perhaps Walden wears best, and best preserves its purity. Many men have been likened to it, but few deserve that honor. Though the woodchoppers have laid bare first this shore and then that, and the Irish have built their sties by it, and the railroad has infringed on its border, and the ice-men have skimmed it once, it is itself unchanged, the same water which my youthful eyes fell on; all the change is in me.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)

    There is a certain class of unbelievers who sometimes ask me such questions as, if I think that I can live on vegetable food alone; and to strike at the root of the matter at once,—for the root is faith,—I am accustomed to answer such, that I can live on board nails. If they cannot understand that, they cannot understand much that I have to say.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)