History of Ireland and the Irish, 1600 to the Present

EIU His 4815, Spring 2015, Newton Key
TR 12:30-1:45 pm, Coleman 2691
Syllabus as pdf (brief version)

His 4815, Modern Irish History (#38687), examines the development of nationalism in Ireland since the end of the 17th century; pays special attention to the connection between social change and the rise of revolutionary movements; includes consideration of the Northern Ireland troubles. Course focuses on 20th-century issues and events in Ireland but roots these in the Anglo-Scot settlements of the 17th century, the romantic nationalism of the late-18th century, and the rural conflict and famine of the 19th. It also examines the Irish diaspora outside the isle, as well as modern Northern Ireland.

Below: Required readings (black dot); additional sources (white dot)

week 1. The Weight

"Ireland" by Thomas Jefferys, published in A New Geographical and Historical Grammar, 1772

week 2. 17th Century: Rebellion, Religion, War, Religion, War

irish rebel 1608

week 3. 18th Century: the Ascendancy

United Irishmen Seal, 1798

week 4. Union and Emancipation

Daniel O'Connell (click for ODNB bio.)

week 5. The Famine

Daniel McDonald, "Disocvery of th e Potato Blight," c. 1850

week 6. The Diaspora

John Glen Wilson, "Emirgrant Ship" c. 1850? (from Belfast)

week 7. Irish-American Nationalism

week 8. Urban and Rural Poverty


week 9. Land and Culture

visiting Aran Islands

week 10. Home Rule and Unionism

  • March 24. Pašeta, Modern Ireland, ch. 5; Hachey and McCaffrey, The Irish Experience, ch. 7
  • March 26. Doyle, A Star Called Henry, part 2
Edward Carson signing the Covenant

week 11. Revolution: Ourselves Alone?

1916 Proclamation

week 12. Civil War to IFS vs. IRA

Michael Collins (click for DNB biography)

week 13. Eire and Nationalism

Eamon De Valera (click for DNB biography)

week 14. New Ireland, Northern Ireland

British soldier, Belfast

week 15. Ireland(s): “All Kinds of Everything”?

Alternative Ulster (Stiff Little Fingers, 1978)
  • Roddy Doyle, A Star Called Henry (New York: Viking, 1999) [13.332]
  • Thomas E. Hachey and Lawrence J. McCaffrey, The Irish Experience Since 1800: A Concise History, 3rd ed. (Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 2010) [15.420]
  • Hugo Hamilton, The Speckled People: A Memoir of a Half-Irish Childhood (New York: Fourth Estate, 2003) [17.102]
  • Senia Pašeta, Modern Ireland: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003) [13.334]

requirements, papers, and exams | office hours | Irish history links

last modified on February 26, 2015