Black '47 and Beyond: The Great Irish Famine in History, Economy, and Memory

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Overview

" Grda has for a number of years been recognized as the leading economic historian of the Irish Famine. This book will immediately be seen as by far the best economic history ever published on the subject, and will remain for decades the best place to start if you want to read something about the Famine. It combines clear, sound economic reasoning with an interdisciplinary approach and an accessible writing style."—Timothy W. Guinnane, Yale University

"This book is a gem of comparative history on the subject of the Great Irish Famine. It displays a knowledge that is at once deep and broad. The author's comparison of Ireland to other societies is particularly apposite, revealing the fact that he is not just the leading economic historian of his own country but also an expert scholar of global history."—Joel Mokyr, Northwestern University

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Editorial Reviews

Times Literary Supplement
One of the book's great strengths is the attempt to place the Irish experience in the contexts of famines in other parts of the world and to compare it to other historical famines, an approach that enriches Irish and general famine studies alike. . . . Black '47 and Beyond is a substantial and often pioneering contribution to the ever-burgeoning field of Irish Famine studies.
Choice
One of the most challenging, original, and readable accounts of the subject to have appeared in the last decade. It contains a fund of ideas and information for both experts and those with only the most general knowledge of the famine. . . . Highly recommended.
The Washington Times
At a stroke, Cormac Ó Gráda's Black '47 and Beyond . . . establishes itself as the definitive work on the famine. Indeed, it is hard to imagine a better study. . . . [It] is staggering in its thoroughness.
— Kevin Driscoll
The Boston Globe
Rigor and meticulousness may be found in Black '47 and Beyond. Ó Gráda holds up to scrutiny each vexed aspect of the Famine and their previous interpretations. The book is both dense and revelatory. . . . The tragedy of the Irish Famine was ultimately the result of a population explosion, of economic backwardness aggravated by political repression, of ideological block-headedness and complacency. It changed Irish society, but its effects reached well beyond that, to Britain's colonies and to the United States.
— Katherine A. Powers
The Spectator
A most impressive, even brilliant, work. . . .
— Paul Bew
The Boston Sunday Globe
Rigor and meticulousness may be found in Black '47 and Beyond. Ó Gráda . . . holds up to scrutiny each vexed aspect of the Famine and their previous interpretations. The book is both dense and revelatory.
— Katherine A. Powers
The Times Higher Education Supplement
Cormac Ó Gráda, Ireland's most distinguished, prolific and wide-ranging economic historian, offers us a choice selection of six chapters. . . . The great value of the book lies in pushing the boundary of Irish famine studies beyond their accustomed limits and by including suggestive comparative references to famines in other times and places. By concentrating on a few topics, Ó Gráda can share with the reader the wealth of his broad scholarship and technical mastery.
— Barbara Solow
The Washington Times - Kevin Driscoll
At a stroke, Cormac Ó Gráda's Black '47 and Beyond . . . establishes itself as the definitive work on the famine. Indeed, it is hard to imagine a better study. . . . [It] is staggering in its thoroughness.
The Boston Globe - Katherine A. Powers
Rigor and meticulousness may be found in Black '47 and Beyond. Ó Gráda . . . holds up to scrutiny each vexed aspect of the Famine and their previous interpretations. The book is both dense and revelatory.
The Spectator - Paul Bew
A most impressive, even brilliant, work. . . .
The Times Higher Education Supplement - Barbara Solow
Cormac Ó Gráda, Ireland's most distinguished, prolific and wide-ranging economic historian, offers us a choice selection of six chapters. . . . The great value of the book lies in pushing the boundary of Irish famine studies beyond their accustomed limits and by including suggestive comparative references to famines in other times and places. By concentrating on a few topics, Ó Gráda can share with the reader the wealth of his broad scholarship and technical mastery.
Time Magazines Literary Supplement
One of the book's great strengths is the attempt to place the Irish experience in the contexts of famines in other parts of the world and to compare it to other historical famines, an approach that enriches Irish and general famine studies alike. . . . Black '47 and Beyond is a substantial and often pioneering contribution to the ever-burgeoning field of Irish Famine studies.
From the Publisher
Winner of the 2000 James S. Donnelly Sr. Prize for Best Book on Irish History or Social Studies

One of Choice's Outstanding Academic Titles for 1999

"One of the book's great strengths is the attempt to place the Irish experience in the contexts of famines in other parts of the world and to compare it to other historical famines, an approach that enriches Irish and general famine studies alike. . . . Black '47 and Beyond is a substantial and often pioneering contribution to the ever-burgeoning field of Irish Famine studies."—Times Literary Supplement

"One of the most challenging, original, and readable accounts of the subject to have appeared in the last decade. It contains a fund of ideas and information for both experts and those with only the most general knowledge of the famine. . . . Highly recommended."—Choice

"At a stroke, Cormac Grda's Black '47 and Beyond . . . establishes itself as the definitive work on the famine. Indeed, it is hard to imagine a better study. . . . [It] is staggering in its thoroughness."—Kevin Driscoll, The Washington Times

"Rigor and meticulousness may be found in Black '47 and Beyond. Grda holds up to scrutiny each vexed aspect of the Famine and their previous interpretations. The book is both dense and revelatory. . . . The tragedy of the Irish Famine was ultimately the result of a population explosion, of economic backwardness aggravated by political repression, of ideological block-headedness and complacency. It changed Irish society, but its effects reached well beyond that, to Britain's colonies and to the United States."—Katherine A. Powers, The Boston Globe

"A most impressive, even brilliant, work. . . ."—Paul Bew, The Spectator

"Rigor and meticulousness may be found in Black '47 and Beyond. Grda . . . holds up to scrutiny each vexed aspect of the Famine and their previous interpretations. The book is both dense and revelatory."—Katherine A. Powers, The Boston Sunday Globe

"Cormac Grda, Ireland's most distinguished, prolific and wide-ranging economic historian, offers us a choice selection of six chapters. . . . The great value of the book lies in pushing the boundary of Irish famine studies beyond their accustomed limits and by including suggestive comparative references to famines in other times and places. By concentrating on a few topics, Grda can share with the reader the wealth of his broad scholarship and technical mastery."—Barbara Solow, The Times Higher Education Supplement

The Boston Globe
Rigor and meticulousness may be found in Black '47 and Beyond. Ó Gráda holds up to scrutiny each vexed aspect of the Famine and their previous interpretations. The book is both dense and revelatory. . . . The tragedy of the Irish Famine was ultimately the result of a population explosion, of economic backwardness aggravated by political repression, of ideological block-headedness and complacency. It changed Irish society, but its effects reached well beyond that, to Britain's colonies and to the United States.
— Katherine A. Powers
Times Literary Supplement
One of the book's great strengths is the attempt to place the Irish experience in the contexts of famines in other parts of the world and to compare it to other historical famines, an approach that enriches Irish and general famine studies alike. . . . Black '47 and Beyond is a substantial and often pioneering contribution to the ever-burgeoning field of Irish Famine studies.
The Washington Times
At a stroke, Cormac Ó Gráda's Black '47 and Beyond . . . establishes itself as the definitive work on the famine. Indeed, it is hard to imagine a better study. . . . [It] is staggering in its thoroughness.
— Kevin Driscoll
The Boston Sunday Globe
Rigor and meticulousness may be found in Black '47 and Beyond. Ó Gráda . . . holds up to scrutiny each vexed aspect of the Famine and their previous interpretations. The book is both dense and revelatory.
— Katherine A. Powers
KLIATT
A professor of economics at University College, Dublin, O'Gráda's specialty is comparative economic history. His approach to the history of the Irish famine of the late 1840s is, therefore, largely statistical and filled with comparisons to other European and Asian famines of record. While this approach does make some of this text rather difficult, it does not prevent the reader from finding much valuable material. The Irish famine of the 1840s killed one in eight Irish citizens, approximately a million people in all. As such, it was one of the most devastating famines in modern times. It sent another million seeking relief as emigrants, largely to the U.S., where, unlike emigrants from other famines, they stayed instead of returning home once the crisis was over. O'Gráda presents the chronology of the famine, the economic conditions in Ireland in the early 1840s, the attempts at famine relief, the varying severity of the famine in different sections of Ireland, and the reaction to the famine by the British government and the English people. That a full 70 pages of this book contains the references, bibliography, and index is an indication of its depth of scholarship. This should encourage, not deter, the serious reader in this field. KLIATT Codes: SA—Recommended for senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 1999, Princeton University Press, 302p, notes, bibliog, index, 24cm, 98-27291, $17.95. Ages 16 to adult. Reviewer: Patricia A. Moore; Academic Resource Ctr., Emmanuel College, Boston, MA (retired) January 2001 (Vol. 35 No. 1)
Library Journal
O Grada (Ireland: A New Economic History, Clarendon, 1994), a professor of economics at University College, Dublin, examines the Irish potato famine through a different prism. Besides historical narratives, he compares population loss and famine relief in 1847 to other famines, including the recent ones in Sudan and Ethiopia. He compares Irish emigration to other ethnic groups under famine conditions, examines the admission records of Dublin hospitals, and takes a demographic look at Five Points, NY, where many Irish immigrants landed, all to determine who actually suffered and how severe the situation was. He concludes that Black '47 was horrific. What made it so bad was Ireland's climate, just right for the blight, and the famine's draining impact on the Irish population and economy, which did not recover as other countries have. This is a commendable addition to any academic library and deserves a place in academic collections alongside classics like Cecil Woodham-Smith's The Great Hunger (Penguin, 1995. reprint).--Robert C. Moore, Raytheon Electronic Systems, Sudbury, MA
Choice
One of the most challenging, original and readable accounts of the subject to have appeared in the last decade. It contains a fund of ideas and information for both experts and those with only the most general knowledge of the famine...Highly recommended.
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Product Details

Table of Contents

List of Figures
Acknowledgments
Introduction 3
Ch. 1 Contexts and Chronology 13
Ch. 2 Relief 47
Ch. 3 The Demography of the Irish Famine 84
Ch. 4 Winners and Losers 122
Ch. 5 Famine in Dublin City 157
Ch. 6 Famine Memory 194
Ch. 7 The Legacy 226
Notes 233
Bibliography 277
Index 297
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