The Irish land question in a wider context
in Land questions in modern Ireland
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This chapter presents Barbara Solow's reflections on The Land Question and the Irish Economy 1870-1903. The intellectual context in which the book came to be researched and written is outlined. Barbara Solow suggests that, notwithstanding considerable technological advances and the accumulation of new research in the meantime, the basic thesis of her book remains essentially correct. She does suggest, however, that if she were to rewrite the book today she would put the Irish story in a broader context, both conceptually and historically. Only after the book had appeared did it become apparent that it may be seen as a case study of Marx's theory of primitive accumulation. A case is made for the relevance of Jon S. Cohen and Martin L. Weitzman's account of what happens when common rights are converted to private property.

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