We live in an "Age of Apologies." In Ireland and around the globe, public authorities and states seek to address and to atone for past wrongs. Within a burgeoning literature on the subject, there is broad agreement on two points: (1) how apologies are used is dependent on context; and (2) the motivations of both apology-provider and audience play an important role in where, when, and how an apology is delivered, and how it is received.
Drawing upon his research as part of the Apologies, Abuses and Dealing with the Past Project, Dr Muiris MacCarthaigh will give a broad overview of of public apologies in contemporary times and then examine the role public apologies have played in Ireland, with particular attention to the 2008 economic crisis, its legacy in Ireland, and the banking sector.
Dr Muiris MacCarthaigh is Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) of Politics and Public Administration at Queen’s University Belfast, and former President of the Political Studies Association of Ireland (2016-19). His most recent book Public Sector Reform in Ireland: Countering Crisis examines the unprecedented state retrenchment and reform that followed the Irish economic crisis of 2007/8.
Moderator: Patrick Griffin, Madden-Hennebry Professor of History and Director, Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies