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Cara Diver

their husbands, that we can label marital violence as a social problem. As Linda Gordon points out, it was one of the great achievements of second-wave feminism to define wife beating as a social problem, instead of a phenomenon of particularly violent men or relationships.5 This chapter will explore the ways in which marital violence was sanctioned and controlled through Irish culture during the years from 1922 to 1965. Social, religious, and economic pressures made it difficult, and often impossible, for an abused wife to escape her husband’s violence. Indeed, a

in Marital violence in post-independence Ireland, 1922–96
Living spirituality

Between 1598 and 1800, an estimated 3, 271 Catholic women left England to enter convents on the Continent. This study focuses more particularly upon those who became Benedictines in the seventeenth century, choosing exile in order to pursue their vocation for an enclosed life. Through the study of a wide variety of original manuscripts, including chronicles, death notices, clerical instructions, texts of spiritual guidance, but also the nuns’ own collections of notes, this book highlights the tensions between the contemplative ideal and the nuns’ personal experiences. Its first four chapters adopt a traditional historical approach to illustrate the tensions between theory and practice in the ideal of being dead to the world. They offer a prosopographical study of Benedictine convents in exile, and show how those houses were both cut-off and enclosed yet very much in touch with the religious and political developments at home. The next fur chapters propose a different point of entry into the history of nuns, with a study of emotions and the senses in the cloister, delving into the textual analysis of the nuns’ personal and communal documents to explore aspect of a lived spirituality, when the body, which so often hindered the spirit, at times enabled spiritual experience.

Waterford’s Magdalen Laundry
Jennifer O’Mahoney, Kate McCarthy, and Jonathan Culleton

Introduction For institutions such as the Magdalen Laundries to exist, Irish society was required to co-construct powerful interpretations of Catholic notions of guilt, sin, silence, and the potential threat of an unrestrained female sexuality. These institutions operated at the nexus of interrelated social constructions of gender, nationalism, and class. The idealised construct of a Catholic, nationalist, Irish woman, pure of race and virtue, provided a societal measurement, which was closely policed within Irish culture

in Legacies of the Magdalen Laundries
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Leanne McCormick

Irish Culture and Politics (Dublin, 1991); Maryann Valiulis, ‘Power, Gender and Identity in the Irish Free State’, in Joan Hoff and Moureen Coulter (eds), Irish Women’s Voices: Past and Present (Bloomington, 1995), pp. 117–136. 2 Ryan, Gender, Identity, p. 42. 3 Ibid. 4 Ibid., p. 49. 5 Brozyna, Labour, Love and Prayer, p. 27. 6 Jan Jindy Pettman, ‘Boundary Politics: Women, Nationalism and Danger’, in Mary Maynard and June Purvis (eds), New Frontiers in Women’s Studies: Knowledge, Identity and Nationalism (London, 1996), p. 195. 7 Mahood, The Magdalenes, p. 165. 8 See

in Regulating sexuality
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S. Karly Kehoe

significant emphasis on the schooling of girls and young women, a feature distinctively lacking in the Protestant tradition.6 The final chapter considers the rise in devotional activity and associational or organisational culture between 1870 and 1900. The confraternities, sodalities, societies and associations that were introduced, largely by the middle class, worked to further consolidate the Catholic population. Although Irish culture would remain a distinctive element in the character of Catholicism, an increasingly united Scottish working-class consciousness and

in Creating a Scottish Church
Mary McGill

behaviour. Texts like Philomena affirm the legitimacy and reality of such experiences, requiring that audiences face ‘a history that Irish society prefers not to acknowledge’ while also shattering ‘the culturally imposed closed ranks’ on taboo subjects like rape, gender-based discrimination, and domestic violence. 26 Although the theme of motherhood has long been ‘ubiquitous’ in Irish culture, it is only in recent times that Irish women have begun to speak as mothers

in Legacies of the Magdalen Laundries
Louise Fuller

expressions of Catholic and Irish identity state were also very concerned to further the aim of restoring the Irish language and culture to its rightful position and they did this chiefly by means of the education system. Church and political interests had the same vision of the purity and distinctiveness of Irish culture and were equally concerned to restore, maintain and protect what was seen as the unique Irish Catholic identity from what were perceived to be alien influences emanating from abroad. Independence made it possible to copper-fasten Catholic identity and

in Irish Catholic identities
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Lindsey Earner-Byrne

appropriate role of charity and raised the thorny issue of responsibility. Tensions concerning religious territory, the domain of charity and the spectre of state control played a part in the move towards the development of a comprehensive maternity service in Ireland between the years 1922 and 1960. This book draws from a wealth of literature on Irish culture, society and politics that had helped to elucidate aspects of life in Ireland during the first half of the twentieth century. In the last decade the scope of research on women in Irish history has expanded beyond

in Mother and child
Open Access (free)
Patrick Doyle

Laffan, The Resurrection of Ireland: The Sinn Féin Party, 1916–1923 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999). 3 Timothy W. Guinnane, The Vanishing Irish: Households, Migration, and the Rural Economy in Ireland, 1850–1914 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1997). 4 Tara Stubbs, American Literature and Irish Culture, 1910–55 (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2013). 5 Giovanni Federico, Feeding the World: An Economic History of Agriculture, 1800–2000 (Princeton: Princeton

in Civilising rural Ireland
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David Heffernan

-century ireland  • ­ ndermining the Irish system of landholding was a paramount concern for u treatise writers and those debating public policy in Ireland more generally. Equally, observers returned over and over to the purportedly perfidious nature of Irish culture and how it could undermine English standards of civility. Clearly, there is no shortage of further avenues to explore in terms of the policy debate on Tudor Ireland and how the treatises impacted thereon. As noted early on in this book those who wrote treatises were driven to do so for a great many reasons. Often

in Debating Tudor policy in sixteenth-century Ireland