Lecture by Molly O’Duffy

In 1935 The Criminal Law Amendment Act was passed in the Irish Free State. It dealt with sexual crime and sexual activity.
Molly’s talk will outline the context that led up to the Act, it will examine how women were viewed in the act, and the impact that had on the women of Ireland.

The talk will also discuss the way in which the purity of women became an essential part of the how the new State viewed itself, thereby branding sexually active women as “deviant”. This Act was a crucial episode in the development of relations between men and women in Ireland and was a missed opportunity to address the real problem of increasing sexual assault.