Magdalene Institutions: Recording an Oral and Archival History is a Government of Ireland Collaborative Research Project funded by the Irish Research Council which was led by Dr Katherine O’Donnell, Director of the Women’s Studies Centre at University College Dublin.

The overall objective of this study is to contribute towards a better understanding of the Magdalene Laundry system that existed in Ireland through the gathering and study of testimonies from people who are directly or indirectly related to these institutions.   

A central aim of this project was to interview Magdalene survivors and their family members, religious sisters who worked at the Magdalene Laundries, as well as visitors to those institutions and other key informantsFurther information about the oral histories is available here.

The interviews and archival documents will be made as widely available as possible to the public. We intend that scholars, teachers, artists and policy makers will be able to gain knowledge of our recent past so that we can begin to understand how abusive systems came to be established in our society. We hope that we can learn how to make better decisions about the vulnerable in our communities and gain inspiration from those who survived the Magdalene Laundry system. We hope that the project will form the basis of new educational programmes, art work (such as documentaries, films literature and paintings), and public policy initiatives. Further information about the archive is available here

Please note:  This project is no longer conducting interviews however, academics at Waterford Institute of Technology have established a similar oral history project.  Those interested in being interviewed should visit the project's website here or contact Dr. Jennifer Yeager at or 051 302251. 

Waterford Memories Project Website
Click here to visit