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Ireland: A History. Little Brown and Company: Boston, Toronto, 1980. Kinealy, Christine. This Great Calamity: The Irish Famine. Gill and MacMillan: New York, 1995.
Ireland before the Famine, 1798-1848. Dublin, Ireland: Gill & MacMillan, Ltd., 1972. - Poirteir, Cathal. The Great Irish Famine. Dublin, Ireland: Mercier Press, 1995.
The nation was deeply devastated by this event both economically and socially. The Great Famine claimed over a million lives due to hunger and disease and resulted in the exodus of another million all in the span of six years. It is uncertain whether or not the famine could have been avoided, but the severity of the famine could have definitely been reduced. There were certain policies and procedures implemented by the British that set the Irish economy up for inevitable failure. Ireland had over eight million people during the mid-19th century.
The Great Irish Famine happened during the mid-19th century, and was caused by potato blight, which hit Ireland in 1845 (Grada, “Ireland’s Great Famine” 43). It destroyed a big portion of crops so it became “lethal” due to the fact that Ireland was very dependent on potatoes in their everyday meals (Grada, “Ireland’s Great Famine” 43). This led to a scarce amount of food and many died from starvation, or other diseases that resulted from the famine (Grada, “Ireland’s Great Famine” 51). In the 1800s, Ireland had already lost their own parliament, so “all legislative and executive power was therefore centralized at Westminster,” which meant the UK parliament of the British government was responsible for Irish relief in their time of need, especially when the potatoes failed (Kinealy, Death-Dealing Famine 41). The British government had many interventions in Ireland during the Great Famine, and the interventions were supposed to contribute to famine relief, and improve social conditions in Ireland.
The truth of why the Irish fared so badly while England became the most powerful nation in the world probably lies somewhere between these two extremes. It's a common assumption that Ireland's mass exodus during the first half of the l9th century was the result of the disastrous potato blight of 1845, but the famine was actually the proverbial last straw. Until the 17th century, the Irish, like much of feudal Europe, consisted of many peasants under the rule of a minority of wealthy landowners. When Oliver Cromwell invaded Ireland in the mid-17th century, those landowners who refused to give up Catholicism saw their property confiscated and then redistributed to the English Army. By 1661, 40% of Ireland was owned by England.
Soon government officials got their wish to stop the use of the Irish language, but not as they would had ever imagined. One impact that caused the establishment of the Gaelic League was the famine that brought so many people to such meager levels of poverty. In the autumn of 1845 a serious academic changed the world for the Irish. The Famine had begun when a big part of the potato crop had been d... ... middle of paper ... ...reland’s history (Hughes 5). If there hadn’t had been so many breakthroughs for the Irish people, much of their culture would be lost today.
When the potato famine hit Ireland in the mid 1840s many people immigrated to New York where they were discriminated against and unable to find jobs because of their Catholic beliefs. The Irish faced many hardships in Ireland, and even more when they landed in America. Life in Ireland was very tough during the potato famine. They were under British control, and their crops were dying. The Irish people were very poor during this time.
There was not enough food in the farmlands either. The Irish depen... ... middle of paper ... ...f reasons to leave the country were the Potato Famine, the issues with the British government, illness and the church made people leave due to British control. This was the introduction and conclusion to the Irish culture, because they fought from the famine through the Monday morning of 1914 when the Easter Uprising created riots on Britain amongst the people of Ireland. This was the greatest movement in Irish history, known as the Fenian Movement. Work Cited Considine, Bob.