Senator David Norris

David’s Story

From the Democratic Republic of Congo to Seanad Éireann
– With thousands of struggles for rights in between –

1944

BORN

David Norris was born 31 July 1944 in Leopoldville in the Belgian Congo, now known as Kinshasa, capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo, where his father (John Norris) worked as chief engineer for Lever Brothers.

1945

MOVES TO IRELAND

John Norris served in the British Armed Forces during World War I and World War II; he died while Norris was still a child. David Norris was then sent to Ireland to be cared for by his mother, Aida Fitzpatrick.

1960 — 1962

ANDREWS COLLEGE

St Andrew's College is a co-educational, inter-denominational, international Independent day school, founded in 1894 by members of the Presbyterian community, and now located in Booterstown, Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown, Ireland. The school colours are blue and white.

1964

TRINITY COLLEGE

Trinity College is a university in Dublin, founded in 1592 by Queen Elizabeth I of England, on the site of an old Augustinian monastery.

1965

FOUNDATION SCHOLAR

Norris obteve o degree of BA in English Literature and Language, where he was elected a Foundation Scholar

1968

EDITOR ICARUS

Icarus is a scientific dissemination magazine dedicated to the field of planetary science. Its owner and initial editor was Academic Press.

1968

JOINED CAMPAIGN FOR HOMOSEXUAL EQUALITY

Based in Manchester, David was their only Irish Member. He used the cunning pseudonym of Alfred J O'Neil in early contacts to avoid blackmail.

1968

BEGAN LECTURING AT TRINITY

Norris remained at Trinity as a lecturer and college tutor between 1968 and 1996.

1970

Although set-up to show solidarity with the oppressed Catholics of Northern Ireland, it was the first Irish Organisation to include Homosexual Law Reform on its agenda.

1973

SYMPOSIUM ON HOMOSEXUALITY

1974

FIRST GAY PRIDE MARCH

1974

IRISH GAY RIGHTS MOVEMENT STARTS

1974

LAST HOUSE

First Interview on Irish Television with an openly gay person.

1979

OPENING OF THE HIRSHFIELD CENTRE

Full-time Community Centre; part-time Cinema and Disco...

1982

JOYCE CENTENARY CELEBRATIONS

David in his role as Chairman, with authors Anthony Cronin & Anthony Burgess, examining a first edition of Joyce's "Ulysses".

1983

LOST CASE CRIMINALISING HOMOSEXUALITY IN SUPREME COURT

“History, Stephen said, is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake.”

1987

ELECTED TO SEANAD

1988

VICTORY!

European Court rules that the law criminalising same sex activities was contrary to the European Convention on Human Rights, in particular Article 8 which protects the right to respect for private life. The law was held to infringe on the right of adults to engage in acts of their own choice

1990

1 MAN SHOW

1991

JOYCE FOR BEGINNERS IS PUBLISHED

David's introduction to Joyce's work. Taking you step by step from the early stories to the mythic dreamworld of Finnegans Wake and Ulysses.

1993

DECRIMINALISATION

Award winning Documentary outlining the struggle to gain acceptance from 1973 to 1993

1994

LEFT TRINITY TO CONCENTRATE ON SEANAD

1996

JOYCE IN THE HIBERNIAN METROPOLIS : ESSAYS

David co-edited this collection of essays from the Joyce symposium with Morris Beja

2007

LORD MAYORS AWARD

2007

DONATES PAPERS TO NATIONAL LIBRARY

2009

MARSHALL OF DUBLIN PRIDE

2011

PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

2012

INTRODUCING JOYCE: A GRAPHIC GUIDE

With illustrator Carl Flint, David explodes the myth of his "difficulty" exploring his life and work in this unique book.

2017

MARRIAGE EQUALITY REFERENDUM

2019

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