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From Galway to Cloyne and beyond

This book engages with the spectacular disenchantment with Catholicism in Ireland over the relatively short period of four decades. It begins with the visit of Pope John Paul II in 1979 and in particular his address to young people in Galway, where the crowd had been entertained beforehand by two of Ireland’s most celebrated clerics, Bishop Eamon Casey and Fr Michael Cleary, both of whom were engaged at the time in romantic affairs that resulted in the birth of children. It will be argued that the Pope’s visit was prompted by concern at the significant fall in vocations to priesthood and the religious life and the increasing secularism of Irish society.

The book then explores the various referenda that took place during the 1980s on divorce and abortion which, although they resulted in victories for the Church, demonstrated that their hold on the Irish public was weakening. The clerical abuse scandals of the 1990s were the tipping point for an Irish public which was generally resentful of the intrusive and repressive form of Catholicism that had been the norm in Ireland since the formation of the State in the 1920s.

Boasting an impressive array of contributors from various backgrounds and expertise, the essays in the book attempt to delineate the exact reasons for the progressive dismantling of the cultural legacy of Catholicism and the consequences this has had on Irish society. Among the contributors are Patricia Casey, Joe Cleary, Michael Cronin, Louise Fuller, Patsy McGarry, Vincent Twomey and Eamonn Wall.

Editor: Tom Inglis

The Irish mind has enabled the Irish to balance and accommodate imagination and intellect, emotion and reason, poetry and science. The notion of cultural difference is not just an Irish story, but a story of nations and ethnic groups all over the world. The story of modernity revolves around people coming to see and understand themselves as belonging to nations. Although there were other European nations that made Catholicism a keystone of national difference, there were many factors that made the Irish project different. The idea of creating a society that had a collective vision and commitment without being socialist became an ideal of the Catholic Church during the latter half of the twentieth century. The Church did, nevertheless, have a profound influence on Irish society and culture. The extent to which the Catholic Church shaped and influenced Irish politics has been the subject of much research and debate. The power of the Catholic Church in politics stemmed from the power it developed in the modernisation of Irish society and, in particular, the controlling of sexuality, marriage and fertility. During the first half of the twentieth century, the Irish developed a particular aversion to marriage. For many nations and ethnic groups, what binds people together is that they speak the same language. It may well be that for generations many Irish people identified the Irish language, music and sport as an inhibitor in embracing a less insular and more urbane, cosmopolitan disposition.

Critical reflections on the Celtic Tiger

Sexual images and innuendo have become commonplace in contemporary advertising; they often fail to register in any meaningful way with the audience. This book examines the essentially racist stereotypes through which Irish people have conventionally been regarded have been increasingly challenged and even displaced perhaps by a sequence of rather more complimentary perspectives. The various developments that are signified within the figure of the Celtic Tiger might be considered to have radically altered the field of political possibility in Ireland. The enormous cuts in public expenditure that marked this period are held to have established a desirable, stable macroeconomic environment. The Celtic Tiger shows that one can use the rhetoric about 'social solidarity' while actually implementing policies which increase class polarisation. The book discusses the current hegemonic construction of Ireland as an open, cosmopolitan, multicultural, tourist-friendly society. The two central pieces of legislation which currently shape Irish immigration policy are the 1996 Refugee Act and the Immigration Bill of 1999. The book offers a critical examination of the realities of the Celtic Tiger for Irish women. Processes of nation state formation invariably invoke homogeneous narratives of ethnicity and national identity. To invoke a collective subject of contemporary Ireland rhetorically is to make such a strategic utopian political assumption. For the last few hundred years, the Gaeltacht has exemplified the crisis of Irish modernity. Culture becomes capital, and vice versa, while political action increasingly consists of the struggle to maintain democratic autonomy in the face of global market forces.

G. Honor Fagan

approach has even greater validity for Ireland in particular. What passes for Irishculture’ today – the musical dance show Riverdance, the ‘supergroup’ U2 or the ubiquitous global ‘Irish pub’ – does not spring from the eternal wells of the Irish soul. Rather, these phenomena are, to a large extent, manufactured by the global cultural industry. They reflect fully all of the hybridity, syncretism and even, arguably, the ‘postmodernism’ typical of the cultural political economy of globalisation. If globalisation can be said to have produced a ‘world showcase of cultures

in The end of Irish history?
Marie Keenan

still is, that this was a problem of flawed individuals, rather than a problem that has significant organisational causative dimensions that became systematically embedded in Church thinking and practice.2 The sexual abuse of children by Catholic clergy has had a profound effect on Irish culture and society. In 1994, the Irish government collapsed when it emerged that the state had failed to extradite from the Republic a priest who had been found guilty of sex abuse charges to answer similar charges in Northern Ireland. This 4147 Inglis–Are the Irish different

in Are the Irish different?
Bryan Fanning

should focus on ordinary life in Ireland tied in closely with his critique of forms of nationalism that claimed legitimacy from the Irish people in the abstract. Matthews is at her strongest when documenting The Bell’s project of representing Irish culture and Irish identity through a focus on everyday life and homespun artefacts. Alongside articles on life in slums, and the experiences of unemployed people and of emigrants, O’Faoláin was also keen to represent the richness of Irish material culture. This culture was primarily a rural one. A number of articles focused

in Irish adventures in nation-building
Anne Byrne

4147 Inglis–Are the Irish different_BB_Layout 1 29/07/2014 09:26 Page 76 8 Single women in story and society Anne Byrne The family has been central to Irish culture and society, evincing an anxious preoccupation with marital and familial relationships. Familism is associated with patriarchal systems in which the family is a valued social institution, supporting traditional performances of gender and sexuality in heterosexual marriage. A thorough understanding of the relations of ‘blood and marriage’ was crucial to a 1930s American anthropological study of Irish

in Are the Irish different?
Irish republican media activism since the Good Friday Agreement
Author: Paddy Hoey

Newspapers, magazines and pamphlets have always been central, almost sacred, forms of communication within Irish republican political culture. While social media is becoming the primary ideological battleground in many democracies, Irish republicanism steadfastly expresses itself in the traditional forms of activist journalism.

Shinners, Dissos and Dissenters is a long-term analysis of the development of Irish republican activist media since 1998 and the tumultuous years following the end of the Troubles. It is the first in-depth analysis of the newspapers, magazines and online spaces in which the differing strands of Irish republicanism developed and were articulated during a period where schism and dissent defined a return to violence.

Based on an analysis of Irish republican media outlets as well as interviews with the key activists that produced them, this book provides a compelling long-term snapshot of a political ideology in transition. It reveals how Irish Republicanism was moulded by the twin forces of the Northern Ireland Peace Process and the violent internal ideological schism that threatened a return to the ‘bad old days’ of the Troubles.

This book is vital for those studying Irish politics and those interestedin activism as it provides new insights into the role that modern activist media forms have played in the ideological development of a 200-year-old political tradition.

Linda Connolly

occluded subjects, such as the Irish Diaspora or ‘the forgotten Irish’, to the fore and transforming the core understanding of ‘who are the Irish?’ in Irish studies in the process. Likewise, a growing body of literary scholars (such as Conor McCarthy, Joe Cleary and Pat Coughlan) are fruitfully and in different ways drawing on the social sciences to contextualise texts. However, all these examples remain a minority. Particular problems continue to arise in postcolonial analysis when sweeping statements are made about all Irish studies – and Irish culture and society

in Are the Irish different?
Katie Liston

. In fact, objective and perceptual expressions of Irish culture have been historically contested, and sport, notably Gaelic games, has played an important role in the shifting dynamics of sameness, difference, bonding and belonging. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, it was unclear whether, in the midst of national debate between various competing elements of Irish culture, a cultural accord could be achieved. This was a hothouse of often confusing cultural and political contradictions in which changing constituencies of educated working, middle

in Are the Irish different?