Ideology and the Irish Question: Ulster Unionism and Irish Nationalism, 1912-1916
Going right to the heart of the Irish Question, Paul Bew offers a new interpretation of Irish politics in the critical 1912-1916 period. He re-examines the issues at stake in the home rule crisis of 1912-14, arguing that the then leader of constitutional nationalism, John Redmond, possessed a plausible political strategy. Redmond's reputation has suffered from the critiques of those who argue either that he failed to conciliate Unionists, or that he lacked the requisite fighting spirit ofmilitant nationalism. This book contains much that is a sympathetic reconstruction of Redmond's vision but it also acknowledges the seriousness of the Ulster Unionist case. Bew analyses the debate concerning land, economy, religion, language, and national identity in the period, and ends with a discussion of the Easter Rising of 1916 which destroyed Redmond's party. He draws out the political, cultural, and economic implications of this development and examines their continuing effect onIrish history.
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