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Area and Ethnic Studies > Irish Studies

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Coire Sois, The Cauldron of Knowledge Cover

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Coire Sois, The Cauldron of Knowledge

A Companion to Early Irish Saga

Tomas O Cathasaigh

Coire Sois, The Cauldron of Knowledge: A Companion to Early Irish Saga offers thirty-one previously published essays by Tomás Ó Cathasaigh, which together constitute a magisterial survey of early Irish narrative literature in the vernacular. Ó Cathasaigh has been called “the father of early Irish literary criticism,” with writings among the most influential in the field. He pioneered the analysis of the classic early Irish tales as literary texts, a breakthrough at a time when they were valued mainly as repositories of grammatical forms, historical data, and mythological debris. All four of the Mythological, Ulster, King, and Finn Cycles are represented here in readings of richness, complexity, and sophistication, supported by absolute philological rigor and yet easy for the non-specialist to follow. The book covers key terms, important characters, recurring themes, rhetorical strategies, and the narrative logic of this literature. It also surveys the work of the many others whose explorations were launched by Ó Cathasaigh's first encounters with the literature. As the most authoritative single volume on the essential texts and themes of early Irish saga, this collection will be an indispensable resource for established scholars, and an ideal introduction for newcomers to one of the richest and most under-studied literatures of medieval Europe.

Compassionate Stranger Cover

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Compassionate Stranger

Asenath Nicholson and the Great Irish Famine

by Maureen O'Rourke Murphy

The first biography of Asenath Nicholson, Compassionate Stranger recovers the largely forgotten history of an extraordinary woman. Trained as a schoolteacher, Nicholson was involved in the abolitionist, temperance, and diet reforms of the day before she left New York in 1844 “to personally investigate the condition of the Irish poor.” She walked alone throughout nearly every county in Ireland and reported on conditions in rural Ireland on the eve of the Great Irish Famine. She published Ireland’s Welcome to the Stranger, an account of her travels in 1847. She returned to Ireland in December 1846 to do what she could to relieve famine suffering—first in Dublin and then in the winter of 1847–48 in the west of Ireland where the suffering was greatest. Nicholson’s precise, detailed diaries and correspondence reveal haunting insights into the desperation of victims of the Famine and the negligence and greed of those who added to the suffering. Her account of the Great Irish Famine, Annals of the Famine in Ireland in 1847, 1848 and 1849, is both a record of her work and an indictment of official policies toward the poor: land, employment, famine relief. In addition to telling Nicholson’s story, from her early life in Vermont and upstate New York to her better-known work in Ireland, Murphy puts Nicholson’s own writings and other historical documents in conversation. This not only contextualizes Nicholson’s life and work, but it also supplements the impersonal official records with Nicholson’s more compassionate and impassioned accounts of the Irish poor.

Daniel O'Connell and the Repeal Year Cover

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Daniel O'Connell and the Repeal Year

Lawrence J. McCaffrey

Irish historians have minimized Daniel O'Connell's role in the Irish liberty movement in favor of later nationalist leaders, largely because of his failure in the 1843 movement for repeal of the Act of Union. In this first detailed study of the final, crucial episode in O'Connell's career, Lawrence J. McCaffrey reassesses his place in Ireland's struggle for independence. The Repeal agitation is viewed as marking a watershed in the course of Irish nationalism.

The significance of this study, however, extends beyond the affairs of England and Ireland. It shows Daniel O'Connell to be among the first to develop the now familiar tactics of constitutional democratic political agitation and it also demonstrates the limitations inherent in these tactics.

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Dublin James Joyce Journal

No. 1 (2008) through current issue

Dublin James Joyce Journal is a co-publication of the James Joyce Research Centre at University College Dublin and the National Library of Ireland. It appears annually in December. It showcases the research activities of the Joyce Research Centre at University College Dublin and gives particular prominence to historicist, archival, genetic, and textual scholarship. It especially aims to feature interpretations of Joyce's work that make use of archival resources.

The Dynamics of War and Revolution: Cork City, 1916-1918 Cover

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The Dynamics of War and Revolution: Cork City, 1916-1918

by John Borgonovo

At the beginning of the First World War, Irish separatists in the city of Cork were marginalised and without political power. By the war’s end, they had supplanted the local elite and launched a bloody war for independence. Using Cork as a case study, this book considers how the First World War brought about political revolution in Ireland, examining: wartime failures of constitutional nationalism; anxieties over food shortages; explosions in trade unionism; the effects of government repression; rising expectations for self-determination; the creation of a mass independence movement; and strident opposition to military conscription. For the first time, the Irish Revolution is viewed through a First World War prism, yielding results that will surprise students of both subjects.

Enigmas of Sacrifice Cover

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Enigmas of Sacrifice

A Critique of Joseph M. Plunkett and the Dublin Insurrection of 1916

Enigmas of Sacrifice: A Critique of Joseph M. Plunkett and the Dublin Insurrection of 1916 is the first critical study of the religious poet and militarist Joseph M. Plunkett, who was executed with the other leaders of the Dublin insurrection of 1916. Through Plunkett the author gains access to areas of nationalist thought that were more often assumed or repressed than publicly formulated.
In this eye-opening book, W. J. Mc Cormack explores and analyzes Plunkett’s brief life, work, and influence, beginning with his wealthy but dysfunctional family, irregular Jesuit education, and self-canceling sexuality. Mc Cormack continues through Plunkett’s active phase when amateur theatricals and a magazine editorship brought him into the emergent neonationalist discourse of early twentieth-century Ireland. Finally, the author arrives at Holy Week 1916, when Plunkett masterminded the forgery of official documentation in order to provoke and justify the insurrection he planned. Mc Cormack analyzes Plunkett’s significant texts and provides context through critical perspectives on his milieu. Enigmas of Sacrifice is unique in its effort to understand a major figure of Irish nationalism in terms that reach beyond political identity.

The Eternal Paddy Cover

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The Eternal Paddy

Irish Identity and the British Press, 1798–1882

Michael de Nie

    In The Eternal Paddy, Michael de Nie examines anti-Irish prejudice, Anglo-Irish relations, and the construction of Irish and British identities in nineteenth-century Britain. This book provides a new, more inclusive approach to the study of Irish identity as perceived by Britons and demonstrates that ideas of race were inextricably connected with class concerns and religious prejudice in popular views of both peoples. De Nie suggests that while traditional anti-Irish stereotypes were fundamental to British views of Ireland, equally important were a collection of sympathetic discourses and a self-awareness of British prejudice. In the pages of the British newspaper press, this dialogue created a deep ambivalence about the Irish people, an ambivalence that allowed most Britons to assume that the root of Ireland’s difficulties lay in its Irishness.
    Drawing on more than ninety newspapers published in England, Scotland, and Wales, The Eternal Paddy offers the first major detailed analysis of British press coverage of Ireland over the course of the nineteenth century. This book traces the evolution of popular understandings and proposed solutions to the "Irish question," focusing particularly on the interrelationship between the press, the public, and the politicians. The work also engages with ongoing studies of imperialism and British identity, exploring the role of Catholic Ireland in British perceptions of their own identity and their empire.

Gender and Medicine in Ireland, 1700-1950 Cover

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Gender and Medicine in Ireland, 1700-1950

Edited by Margaret Preston and Margaret Ó hÓgartaigh

The essays in this collection examine the intersections between gender, medicine, and conventional economic, political, and social histories in Ireland between 1700 and 1950. Gathering many of the top voices in Irish studies and the history of medicine, the editors cover a range of top­ics including midwifery, mental health, alcoholism, and infant mortality. Composed of thirteen chapters, the volume includes James Kelly’s original analyses of eighteenth-century dental practice and midwifery, placing the Irish experience in an international context. Greta Jones, in an exploration of a disease that affected thousands in Ireland, explains the reasons for higher tuberculosis mortality among women. Several es­says call attention to the attempted containment of disease, exploring the role of asylums and the gendered attitudes toward insanity and reform. Contributors highlight the often neglected impact of nurses and midwives, occupations traditionally dominated by women. Presenting a social history of Irish medicine, the disparate essays are united by several common themes: the inherent danger of life in eigh­teenth- and nineteenth-century Ireland, the specific brutality of women’s lives at the time, and the heroics of several enlightened figures.

The Global Dimensions of Irish Identity Cover

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The Global Dimensions of Irish Identity

Race, Nation, and the Popular Press, 1840-1880

Cian T. McMahon

Though Ireland is a relatively small island on the northeastern fringe of the Atlantic, 70 million people worldwide--including some 45 million in the United States--claim it as their ancestral home. In this wide-ranging, ambitious book, Cian T. McMahon explores the nineteenth-century roots of this transnational identity. Between 1840 and 1880, 4.5 million people left Ireland to start new lives abroad. Using primary sources from Ireland, Australia, and the United States, McMahon demonstrates how this exodus shaped a distinctive sense of nationalism. By doggedly remaining loyal to both their old and new homes, he argues, the Irish helped broaden the modern parameters of citizenship and identity.

From insurrection in Ireland to exile in Australia to military service during the American Civil War, McMahon's narrative revolves around a group of rebels known as Young Ireland. They and their fellow Irish used weekly newspapers to construct and express an international identity tailored to the fluctuating world in which they found themselves. Understanding their experience sheds light on our contemporary debates over immigration, race, and globalization.

Great Deeds in Ireland Cover

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Great Deeds in Ireland

Richard Stanihurst’s De Rebus in Hibernia Gestis

This is a translation of Richard Stanihurst’s De Rebus in Hibernia Gestis which was originally published at Leiden in the Netherlands by the famous Plantin press in 1584. It was the first history of Ireland to appear on continent. The core of book is five parts – four chapters called ‘books’ and an appendix. There is also a preface and index. Our edition will consist of the Latin text with a parallel translation plus a scholarly introduction and extensive annotation.

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