Brennan was one of two twin sisters from Ireland (the other was Mary) who, having become nuns in Roman Catholic orders in their youth were attracted to Marxism by liberation theology and eventually became Communists.
Left: Irene Brennan with Eric Atkinson (see separate entry) at the 1981 CP congress
Irene became a member of the British Communist party Executive Committee around 1975 and in that year authored a party pamphlet, “Northern Ireland – a programme for action”.
A lecturer at Central London Polytechnic, she became a Political Committee member and was the Chair of the Congress Arrangements Committee at the 1977 Party congress.
Among publications, her “The Gospel and Marxism” (1983) came out of the sixth Tawney memorial lecture). This was followed by “Credo: Christians and Communists (1985).
Irene Brennan also took part in a television programme in this period that told the story of her move to Communism through Christianity and her belief that the two creeds are not incompatible