Bringing together leading authorities on Irish women and migration, this book offers a significant reassessment of the place of women in the Irish diaspora. It demonstrates the important role played by women in the construction of Irish diasporic identities, comparing Irish women's experience in Britain, Canada , New Zealand and the United States. The book considers how the Catholic Church could be a focal point for women's Irish identity in Britain. It examines how members of the Ladies' Orange Benevolent Association (LOBA) maintained a sense of Irish Protestant identity, focused on their associational life in female Orange lodges. The book offers a lens on Irish society, and on countries where they settled, and considerable scope for comparative analysis of the impact of different cultures and societies on women's lives. It reviews key debates in Transnational Studies (TS) and Diaspora Studies (DS) before discussing the particular contribution of DS in framing 1990s study of migrant and non-migrant Irish women. Feminist and queer theory scholarship in Irish DS has begun to address the gender and sexual politics of diaspora by attending to the dynamics of boundary expansion, queering and dissolution. The book suggests that religion can be both a 'bright' and a 'blurry' boundary, while examining how religious identities intersect with ethnicity and gender. It also includes the significance of the categories of gender and generation, and their intersection with ethnicity in the context of the official London St Patrick's Day Festival.
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Thinking about Ireland and the Irishdiaspora
Mary J. Hickman
Emigration has been a defining feature of Irish history and is a key motif of the
current social and economic crisis. And yet is relatively understudied in Ireland.
The Great Famine has had enormous attention, in terms of its impact both in
Ireland and on the massive emigrations that followed. But the impact of the two
major phases of emigration in the twentieth century – the 1950s and 1980s – have
been less integrated into
Migrations of people, ideas, beliefs and cultures have closely shaped relations between the nations of the British and Irish Isles. In part this was the result of Anglo-imperialism, which expanded from a heartland around London and the South of England, first, then through the ‘Celtic fringe’, creating hybrid peoples who were both Irish and British, before spreading across the globe. At times, Catholics of both islands were exiled from this narrative of nation-building. Political pressures, economic opportunities, a spirit of adventure and sometimes force, spurred the creation of multiple diasporas from the British and Irish Isles. This book brings together a range of leading scholars who explore the origins, varieties and extent of these diasporas. Wherever Britons and the Irish went, they created new identities as neo-Britons, neo-Angles, neo-Irish, neo-Scots: persons who were colonials, new nationals, and yet still linked to their old country and home nations. British and Irish emigrants also perpetuated elements of their distinctive national cultures in music, literature, saints’ days and broader, diffuse interactions with fellow nationals. These especially commissioned essays explore processes of diaspora-formation from the English Catholic exiles of the sixteenth century, through the ‘Wild Geese’, Jacobites, traders and servants of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, to the modern colonising diasporas associated with the modern age of mass migration.
Irishdiaspora Catholicism in
In their global faiths as in their insular polities, the experiences of the
Irish at home entailed a series of unstable ‘identities’ to ease relations
with others. This was so despite their obligation of due deference to
political authority, regardless of those exercising it. The search for
status and prestige imposed choreography of positioning in social life
which weakened any consistent outward witness to Catholic values.
Impoverished political identities exacerbated this, regardless of their
Migration is one of the key issues in Ireland today. This book provides a new and original approach to understanding contemporary Irish migration and immigration, showing that they are processes that need to be understood together. It focuses on four key themes (work, social connections, culture and belonging) that are common to the experiences of immigrants, emigrants and internal migrants. The Gathering was an Irish government initiative held during 2013, bringing together festivals, concerts, seminars, family reunions under one convenient label, using it as a marketing campaign to encourage members of the Irish diaspora to visit Ireland. The 'Currents of Migration' map, together with the nuances of Ravenstein's discussion of migration, offer us a useful way to think about how we might map migration to and from Ireland. The emphasis on a close relationship between migration decisions and work has resulted in a wide range of research on the topic. The book describes social connections: on the ways in which we create, maintain and extend their social connections through the experience of migration. Migrants change the cultural structures and productions of particular places, and these changes may be welcomed to an extent, particularly in aspiring or already global cities. The temptations and complications of belonging become even more evident in association with migration. The book concludes by advocating for a place-based approach to migration, showing how this focus on Ireland as a specific place adds to our more general knowledge about migration as a process and as a lived experience.
What role does memory play in migrants’ adaption to the emotional challenges of migration? How are migrant selfhoods remade in relation to changing cultural myths? This book, the first to apply Popular Memory Theory to the Irish diaspora, opens new lines of critical enquiry within scholarship on the Irish in modern Britain. Combining innovative use of migrant life histories with cultural representations of the post-war Irish experience, it interrogates the interaction between lived experience, personal memory and cultural myth to further understanding of the work of memory in the production of migrant subjectivities. Based on richly contextualised case studies addressing experiences of emigration, urban life, work, religion and the Troubles in England, chapters illuminate the complex and contingent relationship between politics, culture and migrant identities, developing a dynamic view of the lived experience of British–Irish relations after 1945. Where memory is often regarded as a mechanism of antagonism within this relationship, Life History shows how migrants’ ‘recompose’ memories of migration as part of ongoing efforts to adapt to the transition between cultures and places. As well as shedding new light on the collective fantasies of post-war migrants and the circumstances which formed them, Life History thus illustrates the cultural and personal dynamics of subjective change over time: migrants located themselves as the subjects of a diverse and historically evolving repertoire of narratives, signalling adaption, difference and integration as co-articulating features of the Irish experience in post-1945 England.
Irish diaspora studies and women: theories, concepts and new perspectives
D. A. J. MacPherson and Mary J. Hickman
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Irishdiaspora studies and women:
theories, concepts and
D. A. J. MacPherson and Mary J. Hickman
Popular usage of the term ‘Irishdiaspora’ has grown in parallel with the proliferation of academic studies that apply the term to any number of migrant or
ethnic groups.1 In an Irish context, during the 1990s President Mary Robinson
was at the forefront of public discussion in which the ‘Irish abroad’ became the
‘Irishdiaspora’. Robinson’s conception of an Irishdiaspora embraced a diverse
Ireland’s diaspora strategy: diaspora
Mark Boyle, Rob Kitchin and Delphine Ancien
In 2011, when the population of the Irish Republic stood at 4.58 million, over
70 million people worldwide claimed Irish descent, and 3.2 million Irish
passport holders, including 800,000 Irish-born citizens, lived overseas
(Ancien et al., 2009). Despite being varied and complex, it is often assumed
that a strong relationship has prevailed between the Irishdiaspora and
Ireland, with the diaspora
Recent studies of the Irish and the Scots in New Zealand have pointed to the prevalence of social networks for migrants. This book argues that discrimination, even when experienced, was not a precondition for the ethnic consciousness felt by and ascribed to the Irish and Scots in New Zealand. Rather, most aspects of their ethnic identities were positively constructed and articulated. It contends that overarching narratives of exile had little significance in the development of Irish and Scottish ethnic identities in New Zealand. The book looks at the ways in which Irish and Scottish migrants and their sense of Irishness and Scottishness been examined in studies of the diaspora. A sense of being Irish or Scottish is explored, along with identifications such as Highlander, Lowlander, Northern Irish, and Southern Irish, Britishness; New Zealand identities are also considered. The book highlights the range of sources from which we can obtain some insight into the use of and attitudes towards the Irish and Scottish languages and accents in New Zealand. A range of elements including music, festivals, food and drink, and dress is considered to examine the material tokens of Irish and Scottish ethnicity. Religious and political identities were also important aspects of Scottishness and Irishness. A range of national characteristics is examined among the migrants and their descendants in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Views of New Zealand and its indigenous Maori population are further ways in which Irish and Scottish migrants conveyed aspects of their identities.
The political nationalism of the Irish diaspora since the 1790s
David T. Gleeson
Emigrants and exiles: the political
nationalism of the Irishdiaspora since
David T. Gleeson
In February 1995, President Mary Robinson gave an address to a joint
session of the Oireachtas (Irish Parliament) titled ‘Cherishing the Diaspora’,
explaining in more detail the promise in her inaugural speech to ‘represent’
the ‘over 70 million people of this globe who claim Irish descent’.1 Irish
emigration had long been in the consciousness of the Irish people, but it
seemed to many that the story had ended at the water’s edge. Quoting
poet Eavan Boland