The Irish Famine: A Documentary

The Irish Famine: A Documentary[Reading] ➶ The Irish Famine: A Documentary By Colm Tóibín – Jobs-in-kingston.co.uk The Irish Potato Famine of the s has been popularly perceived as a genocide attributable to the British government In professional historical circles, however, such singular thinking was dismissed man The Irish Potato Famine of Famine: A PDF/EPUB å the s has been popularly perceived as a genocide attributable to the British government In professional historical circles, however, such singular thinking was dismissed many years ago, as evidenced by the scathing academic response to Cecil Woodham Smith sclassic, The Great Hunger, which, in addition to presenting a vivid and horrifying picture of the human suffering, made strong accusations against the British government s failure to act And while British governmental sins of omission and commission during the famine played their The Irish Epub / part, there is a broader context of land agitation and regional influences of class conflict within Ireland that also contributed to the starvation of than a million peopleThis remarkable book opens a door to understanding all sides to this tragedy with an absorbing history provided by novelist Colm Toibin that is supported by a collection of key documents selected by historian Diarmaid Ferriter An important piece of revisionist thinking, The Irish Famine A Documentary is sure to become the classic primer for this lamentable period of Irish Irish Famine: A PDF Ì history. Like I said before, I ll read Colm Toibin s thoughts on pretty much anything He says in his introduction that this book is an attempt to temper the British as genocidal killers narrative of the famine which he blames a lot on Irish American sentimentalism , but the primary sources that Ferriter collects didn t do a lot to make me respect what the British goverment did in that time But it does show a lot of the good done by independent British and Irish citizens Ultimately I learned a lot Like I said before, I ll read Colm Toibin s thoughts on pretty much anything He says in his introduction that this book is an attempt to temper the British as genocidal killers narrative of the famine which he blames a lot on Irish American sentimentalism , but the primary sources that Ferriter collects didn t do a lot to make me respect what the British goverment did in that time But it does show a lot of the good done by independent British and Irish citizens Ultimately I learned a lot but it didn t really change my mind, but maybe I m just an overly sentimental Irish American 2.5 Stars I picked this up on a whim, with only a cursory look at the description and this didn t turn out to be the book I thought it was I thought it was accounts from people who had endured the famine, but this is actually a series of reports, letters, articles, statistics, findings and other official documents sent during the Irish Famine Due to the era this does have a rather prolix Victorian feel to it, that does not really make for great casual reading, but then neither it should, it s 2.5 Stars I picked this up on a whim, with only a cursory look at the description and this didn t turn out to be the book I thought it was I thought it was accounts from people who had endured the famine, but this is actually a series of reports, letters, articles, statistics, findings and other official documents sent during the Irish Famine Due to the era this does have a rather prolix Victorian feel to it, that does not really make for great casual reading, but then neither it should, it s a serious subject Much of this is taken up with self important Sirs exchange long winded correspondence with Lords, Dukes and Earls and other members of the aristocracy, their words and behaviour wavering between total ignorance and blind indifference, as the people of their nation starve to death.It is split into two main sections, it opens up with Toibin giving a brief historical background in to the famine He makes a number of good points, citing the significance of the Gregory clause, introduced by Sir William Gregory of Coole Park and MP for Dublin in 1847 This made it law that any family owning a quarter acre of land or , would not be granted relief, either in or out of the workhouse until they gave up all of their land It is notable that the clause was passed unopposed, which gives us a clear insight into the mentality and priorities of the political elite in Victorian Britain.Toibin adds another really good point in saying, It is plain from much writing about the Famine that two things happened in its aftermath One, people blamed the English and the Ascendency Two, there began a great silence about class division in Catholic Ireland Like the Highland clearances in Scotland, the British East India Company in India and countless other locations The clearing of the land and starvation of the people could not have worked as successfully as it did and for as long as it did if it wasn t for the valuable support of people already living there, who were happy to betray their fellow countrymen and aid the British elite in exchange for their own little slice of power and control Class is always part of the issue, and often trumps any illusions about nationalism Irish landlords were as culpable as the English elite, as they were all part of the same system.Sometimes it is forgotten that Ireland was part of The United Kingdom for the entire duration of the famine The British Empire, too content with convincing itself that it ruled the waves, but in reality it could not even feed its own starving people and so they had to flee to many other corners of the globe to save themselves.According to the census of 1841 Ireland had a population of 8 175 124 people, by 1861 that had plummeted to 5 764 543 Between the years of 1846 49 around 1 million people died of disease, hunger and fever, with the west suffering the most By the end of 1847, 20 000 immigrants to Canada had died, 80% of the entire Irish immigration By 1851, 1 million people of Irish descent were living in the US.This book reminds us about the mind set of those in power, their faith and concerns always lies with themselves and their interests Self preservation, protecting assets and preserving power is always the primary concern without exception, only then will thought be given to anyone else outside this elite group Just like Obama and his cabinet after the financial crash or the Conservative government during Brexit The names may change, the country may be different, but these fundamental principles will always remain the same History well documented and well told rarely comes out with a roster of those with whom we morally sympathize lined up neatly on one side of a major event and a contrasting roster of moral monsters on the other, and so it is with the story of the Irish famine of the mid 19th century The authors try through a prefacing essay and a selection of documents from contemporary observers of and participants in the event in question to develop anuanced view than that espoused in John Mitchel s now History well documented and well told rarely comes out with a roster of those with whom we morally sympathize lined up neatly on one side of a major event and a contrasting roster of moral monsters on the other, and so it is with the story of the Irish famine of the mid 19th century The authors try through a prefacing essay and a selection of documents from contemporary observers of and participants in the event in question to develop anuanced view than that espoused in John Mitchel s now famous quip to the effect that the potato blight was an act of God but the Irish famine was an act of Parliament Did some Irish benefit from the death, departure, and misery of their fellows Yes Did many British citizens outside Ireland make noble and even heroic efforts to assist in famine relief Yes Was the British government entirely without conscience in its response to the disaster No, not entirely All of this being granted however does not gainsay or explain away the fact that the death and desolation associated with the famine were visited almost entirely and disproportionately upon the poor cottier class There were victims, and they were poor Irish agricultural laborers The blame for the anemic British response to the catastrophe can be laid equally at the feet of ideology and bigotry, but the authors attempt at revisionism, however mild, runs aground on the rhetorical question posed by Issac Butt in an 1847 document cited in the book If Cornwall had been visited with the same scenes that have desolated Cork, would similar arguments have been used I m sort of torn about this book It had a lot of useful information, and it s nice if you want to read a lot of documentation from the time of the Great Famine without having to weed through newspapers and government documents in a library somewhere I also respect that the author tries to tone down the accusatory tone a lot of people take with the famine and the English government There are a few good points brought up, like how it wasn t all the fault of the English because many people in Ir I m sort of torn about this book It had a lot of useful information, and it s nice if you want to read a lot of documentation from the time of the Great Famine without having to weed through newspapers and government documents in a library somewhere I also respect that the author tries to tone down the accusatory tone a lot of people take with the famine and the English government There are a few good points brought up, like how it wasn t all the fault of the English because many people in Ireland took advantage of the situation and prospered because of the suffering of their neighbors There are certainly enough accounts out there that blow things way out of proportion, so I can see where the desire to stay objective comes from, but I almost felt he was trying to distance himself from the issue too much Overall, I thought it was a pretty informative book, but I could have done with a littlenarrative talking about the context of the documents and the author s thoughts on them I value it mainly because of the excerpts of documents and letters and things which is the majority of the book and not for the few pages where the author writes a little background and states, basically, that he isn t going to point fingers or take sides or get emotional about the issue.Really, to be fair though, it would probably be very useful for anyone wanting to read one of thefair accounts of the famine Revisionist history that s not actually based on fact or history. A well written short survey of the historiography and politics of the Great Irish Famine 1845 9 at the time of writing at the end of the 90s.NB I only have the short T ib n book, and not the additional documentary material or commentary supplied by Ferriter. Interesting information presented in a very readable narrative The second half of the book has primary source documents written by government officials, landowners, immigrants, newspapers and charity groups. Good, short, introductory essay followed by primary source material. Read for History of Ireland The first part details some of the history of the famine, but most of the book contains excerpts from contemporaneous documents associated with the famine.

The Irish Famine: A Documentary PDF/EPUB ß Irish
  • Hardcover
  • 224 pages
  • The Irish Famine: A Documentary
  • Colm Tóibín
  • English
  • 22 October 2017
  • 0312300514