An Irish Empire?: Aspects of Ireland and the British Empire

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Keith Jeffery
Manchester University Press, 1996 - Great Britain - 256 pages
This volume, which explores aspects of the experience of Ireland and Irish people within the British Empire, addresses a central concern of modern Irish scholarship. Much academic writing about Ireland, its history and culture is dominated by the vocabulary of imperialism. Engels described Ireland as England's first colony. Contemporary observers frequently characterise it as having a post-colonial society. Ireland, on the other hand, was also part of the metropolitan core of the Empire and supplied many of its soldiers, settlers and administrators. The paradox that Ireland was both 'imperial' and 'colonial' lies at the heart of this book which includes studies of Irish service in the Empire as well as the impact of imperial concerns in Ireland. Concentrating on the period since the mid-nineteenth century, the scope of the volume is impressively broad. Popular culture, sport and film are investigated, as well as business history and the military and political 'sinews of Empire'. The book will be of particular value to institutions teaching Irish and British history to degree level and the growing number of Irish studies courses being offered in Great Britain and North America.

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