The big fellow: the life of Michael Collins

Course Dates: 13/11/21 - 04/12/21
Time: 10:30 - 12:00
Location: Online
2021 marks the centenary year of the 1921 Anglo Irish-Treaty. On this short course we will evaluate the life, career and legacy of the Irish dissident, politician, finance minister and military leader, Michael Collins, a leading figure in the Irish War of Independence. How can we best evaluate the ‘Big Fellow’s’ political legacy?
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
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Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £55.00 Concession £35.00

This course has now started

Course Code: HBH24

Started Sat, day, 13 Nov - 04 Dec '21

Duration: 4 sessions (over 4 weeks)

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

On this short online course we will explore Collins’ life and the myriad roles he played during Ireland’s struggle for independence, including his often undervalued work as a finance minister; the clandestine tactics, assassinations and intelligence networks he organised during the Irish War of Independence; his role as a political negotiator in London for the 1921 Ango-Irish Treaty along with Arthur Griffith, Lloyd George and Winston Churchill; and as Chairman of the Provisional Government of the Irish Free State and general during the subsequent Irish Civil War.

This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
- Earphones/headphones/speakers.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.

What will we cover?

• An overview of key events in the period
• Michael Collins, the Irish Republican Brotherhood and the Irish Volunteers
• M.P. for Cork
• The 1916 Easter Rising and imprisonment
• Dáil Éireann & work as Finance Minister
• Political insurgency: guerrilla warfare, intelligence, and The Squad
• The British Army and the Black and Tans
• The Anglo-Irish Treaty
• Collins and Northern Ireland
• Commander in Chief of the Irish Free State and the Irish Civil War
• Assasination at Béal na Bláth.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

• Assess the insurgency tactics used by Michael Collins throughout his political career
• Evaluate the significance of Collins’ work as a politician in Dáil Éireann
• Evaluate Collins’ role in the Anglo- Irish treaty
• Assess Collins’ leadership strategies
• Evaluate the various ways in which Collins is portrayed in history and popular culture, and the implications of these representations for history.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

This is an introductory y course. Some basic general knowledge of early C20th Irish history is useful, but not essential.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

Through a short series of online lectures. Online debates and discussions are encouraged. A Google Classroom is available with a reading list and handouts if you wish to develop your knowledge of the topic. You will also have the opportunity to share any family histories and memoirs relating to Michael Collins and key events in the period, which can be shared with the class via the tutor and Google Classroom.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?


When I've finished, what course can I do next?

Other courses in British and Irish history. Please see the City Lit website.

We’re sorry. We don’t have a bio ready for the tutor of this class at the moment, but we’re working on it! Watch this space.