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A centuries-old dream?
Author: Alex J. Bellamy

This book assesses the formation of Croatian national identity in the 1990s. It develops a novel framework, calling into question both primordial and modernist approaches to nationalism and national identity, before applying that framework to Croatia. In doing so, the book provides a new way of thinking about how national identity is formed and why it is so important. An explanation is given of how Croatian national identity was formed in the abstract, via a historical narrative that traces centuries of yearning for a national state. The book shows how the government, opposition parties, dissident intellectuals and diaspora groups offered alternative accounts of this narrative in order to legitimise contemporary political programmes based on different versions of national identity. It then looks at how these debates were manifested in social activities as diverse as football, religion, economics and language. This book attempts to make an important contribution to both the way we study nationalism and national identity, and our understanding of post-Yugoslav politics and society.

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.

A socio-cultural critique of the Celtic Tiger and its aftermath

This book examines the phenomenon of the rise and fall of the Irish Celtic Tiger from a cultural perspective. It looks at Ireland's regression from prosperity to austerity in terms of a society as opposed to just an economy. Using literary and cultural theory, it looks at how this period was influenced by, and in its turn influenced, areas such as religion, popular culture, politics, literature, photography, gastronomy, music, theatre, poetry and film. It seeks to provide some answers as to what exactly happened to Irish society in the past few decades of boom and bust. The socio-cultural rather than the purely economic lens it uses to critique the Celtic Tiger is useful because society and culture are inevitably influenced by what happens in the economic sphere. That said, all of the measures taken in the wake of the financial crash sought to find solutions to aid the ailing economy, and the social and cultural ramifications were shamefully neglected. The aim of this book therefore is to bring the ‘Real’ of the socio-cultural consequences of the Celtic Tiger out of the darkness and to initiate a debate that is, in some respects, equally important as the numerous economic analyses of recent times. The essays analyse how culture and society are mutually-informing discourses and how this synthesis may help us to more fully understand what happened in this period, and more importantly, why it happened.

Politics, economic mobilisation and society, 1939-45

This book surveys the political, economic and social history of Northern Ireland in the Second World War. Since its creation in 1920, Northern Ireland has been a deeply divided society and the book explores these divisions, including loyalist and republican commemoration, IRA activity, policing, internment, preparations for war and the absence of consensus on the war itself. It examines rearmament in the 1930s, the relatively slow pace of wartime mobilisation, the impact of the blitz in 1941, as well as labour and industrial relations. Northern Ireland was the only part of the UK with a devolved government and no military conscription during the war. The book includes the debate on conscription, including the opposition of the Catholic Church, as well as the controversy on the formation of the Home Guard. The absence of military conscription made the process of mobilisation, and the experience of men and women, very different from that in Britain. There is also extensive coverage of wartime politics and social policy. As elsewhere in the UK, the war raised important questions about housing, crime, youth welfare, and led the broader debates on social policy following the 1942 Beveridge Report. The conclusion considers Northern Ireland in 1945 and how its government faced the domestic and international challenges of the postwar world.

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A spirited exchange 1760-1960
Editor: Avril Horner

The essays in this book demonstrate the importance of translation and European writing in the development of the Gothic novel. Cross-cultural exchanges occurred with the translation of novels by English writers into French. The book first situates works by British writers and American writers within a European context and legacy. Next, it offers readings of less-known works by Gothic authors. The book introduces the reader to a range of neglected, albeit influential, European Gothic texts which originated in Russian, Spanish, French and German. It argues that the level of ideological manipulation, which occurred as texts were translated, mistranslated, appropriated, misappropriated, altered and adapted from one language to another, was so considerable and so systematic that generic mutations were occasioned. The book suggests that Matthew Lewis's The Monk offers a few models of femininity, all deriving from and intended to disrupt, previous literary representations. It focuses on the automatic and the systematic in Charles Maturin's work in relation to Denis Diderot's contemporary philosophical conceptualizations of consciousness and identity. Gothic treacheries are dealt with through Samuel Coleridge's analysis of misappropriation of Friedrich Schiller's Die Rauber. The book also discusses the representations of ritual violence, as sanctioned by the Catholic Church, in English and Spanish pictorial and literary texts between 1796 and 1834. It talks about the Arabesque narrative technique of embedding tales within tales to create a maze in which even the storyteller becomes lost, reflecting the Eastern notion that the created is more important than the creator.

Britain, 1945–90
Author: Carmen Mangion

Catholic nuns and sisters in a secular age examines the changes in religious life for women religious in Britain from 1945 to 1990 identifying how community and individual lives were altered. This work is grounded in three core premises: women religious were influenced by and participated in the wider social movements of the long 1960s; women’s religious institutes were transnational entities and part of a larger global happening; and the struggles of renewal were linked to competing and contradictory ideas of collective, institutional identities. The work pivots on the Second Vatican Council (1962–1965), but considers pre and post Vatican II social, cultural and religious events and social movements of the 1960s as influencers in these changes. It interrogates ‘lived experience’ by examining the day-to-day lives of women religious. Though rooted in the experiences of women religious in Britain, the book probes the relationships and interconnectivities between women religious within and across national divides as they move from institutions embedded in uniformity to the acceptance of cultural plurality. It also engages with the histories of the social movements of the long 1960s. For too long, religion has been relegated to its own silo, unlinked to the ‘radical sixties’ and depicted as ultimately obstructionist to its social movements. To contest this, female religious life is examined as a microcosm of change in the Catholic Church pointing to the ‘new thinking and freer lifestyles’ that allowed for the questioning of institutional cultures.

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War, politics and religion, 1641–50
Editor: Patrick Little

This volume presents cutting-edge research on one of the most controversial periods in Irish history. The essays re-examine key aspects of the decade, including the problem of allegiance and loyalty and the role of central institutions, notably the Irish Parliament and the Church of Ireland. It also provides new perspectives on the nature of alternatives sources of authority, such as the Confederation of Kilkenny, the Roman Catholic Church and the English Parliament. The focus on government is balanced by important new research on popular politics and on regional history, with essays highlighting the reaction to rebellion and warfare in Munster, Connacht and Ulster. The volume also sheds light on the careers of important individuals, including the marquess of Ormond, the earl of Clanricarde, Sir John Clotworthy, Lord Montgomery of the Ards and Oliver Cromwell. The essays are complemented by an introduction which emphasises the general crisis of authority that prevented attempts at reaching a peace deal and brought Ireland into a new war of religion by the end of the decade, with Oliver Cromwell emerging as the brutal victor.

This book explores the theory and practice of authority during the later sixteenth century, in the religious culture and political institutions of the city of Nantes, where the religious wars traditionally came to an end with the great Edict of 1598. The Wars of Religion witnessed serious challenges to the authority of the last Valois kings of France. In an examination of the municipal and ecclesiastical records of Nantes, the author considers challenges to authority, and its renegotiation and reconstruction in the city, during the civil war period. After a detailed survey of the socio-economic structures of the mid-sixteenth-century city, successive chapters detail the growth of the Protestant church, assess the impact of sectarian conflict and the early counter reform movement on the Catholic Church, and evaluate the changing political relations of the city council with the urban population and with the French crown. Finally, the book focuses on the Catholic League rebellion against the king and the question of why Nantes held out against Henry IV longer than any other French city.

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Treason and betrayal in six modern Irish novels
Author: Gerry Smyth

This book argues that modern Irish history encompasses a deep-seated fear of betrayal, and that this fear has been especially prevalent throughout Irish society since the revolutionary period at the outset of the twentieth century. The author goes on to argue that the novel is the literary form most apt for the exploration of betrayal in its social, political and psychological dimensions. The significance of this thesis comes into focus in terms of a number of recent developments – most notably, the economic downturn (and the political and civic betrayals implicated therein) and revelations of the Catholic Church’s failure in its pastoral mission. As many observers note, such developments have brought the language of betrayal to the forefront of contemporary Irish life. After an introductory section in which he considers betrayal from a variety of religious, psychological and literary perspectives, Gerry Smyth goes on to analyse the Irish experience of betrayal: firstly through a case study of one of the country’s most beloved legends – Deirdre of the Sorrows; and secondly, through extended discussion of six powerful Irish novels in which ideas of betrayal feature centrally - from adultery in James Joyce’s Ulysses, touting in Liam O’Flaherty’s The Informer and spying Elizabeth Bowen’s The Heat of the Day, through to writing itself in Francis Stuart’s Black List, Section H, murder in Eugene McCabe’s Death and Nightingales and child abuse in Anne Enright’s The Gathering (2007). This book offers a powerful analysis of modern Irish history as regarded from the perspective of some its most incisive minds.

Laurence Lux-Sterritt

The Protestant critics of the early modern Catholic Church denounced what they sometimes described as its sensual approach to the sacred. In the convents, behavioural guidebooks exhorted the Sisters to break away from their senses and to move towards a more perfect a-sensory contemplative state, where prayer no longer needed sensate perceptions to stimulate the soul. Yet the personal writings of the nuns are full of references to the senses; they provide valuable details on the individual experience of the cloistered life. Women taking the veil exchanged a sensory world for another, in which the sights, smells and sounds evoked the sacred. In prayer, they also felt with what they described as their ‘inner senses’. Although little used until now, the prism of the study of the senses provides a fascinating insight into the lived experience of women in early modern convents.

in English Benedictine nuns in exile in the seventeenth century