“The Woman of the Iron Lungs,” Marie Mulholland, is a feminist activist and community worker from Belfast. She was a member of Women Against Imperialism and the Women’s News Collective and cofounded the Women’s Support Network. In 1987 she led a successful campaign for the demolition of the Divis Flats, and provision of new housing for residents. Marie Mulholland received the Constance Markievicz Award in recognition of this achievement at a ceremony in Boston. In her acceptance speech she acknowledged the women from Divis who supported her, saying: “I believe… in the power of women.” Marie Mulholland contributed to many periodicals, including Village, f/m Feminist Magazine, and Women’s News. She was lead singer in the feminist band, BUST, and was an active supporter of equality and LGBTQ+ rights. Marie Mulholland resides in Cork, where she coordinates the West Cork Women Against Violence project.
This collection was donated by Marie Mulholland and relates to the Women’s Support Network, which she co-founded in 1989; her cross-border “POWER programme”; “Women Seen and Heard,” a European funded project that aimed to make women more visible; a “Women Working for Change” equality campaign; Women Against Imperialism; LGBTQ+ equality campaigns and rallies; feminist articles in Village news, f/m magazine, and Women’s News (of which she was also a member); correspondences arranging the first visit of the Irish President to the north; research into the historical female activist Kathleen Lynn; and receiving the Constance Markievicz Award in Boston, 1987. The collection contains video interviews, a recording of a conference, brochures, posters, newspaper cuttings, magazines, reports, booklets, letters, and printed pages ranging from 1983-2009.