Charity and the Great Hunger in Ireland: The Kindness of Strangers

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A&C Black, Oct 10, 2013 - History - 424 pages
The Great Irish Famine was one of the most devastating humanitarian disasters of the nineteenth century. In a period of only five years, Ireland lost approximately 25% of its population through a combination of death and emigration. How could such a tragedy have occurred at the heart of the vast, and resource-rich, British Empire?

Charity and the Great Hunger in Ireland explores this question by focusing on a particular, and lesser-known, aspect of the Famine: that being the extent to which people throughout the world mobilized to provide money, food and clothing to assist the starving Irish. This book considers how, helped by developments in transport and communications, newspapers throughout the world reported on the suffering in Ireland, prompting funds to be raised globally on an unprecedented scale. Donations came from as far away as Australia, China, India and South America and contributors emerged from across the various religious, ethnic, social and gender divides. Charity and the Great Hunger in Ireland traces the story of this international aid effort and uses it to reveal previously unconsidered elements in the history of the Famine in Ireland.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Chapter 1 Apparitions of death and disease1 Official responses to the Famine
15
Chapter 2 Some great and terrible calamity1 Relief efforts from near and afar
41
Chapter 3 A labour of love1 Quaker Charity
63
Chapter 4 An ocean of benevolence1 The General Relief Committee of New York
85
Chapter 5 Arise ye dead of Skibbereen1 Leading by example
107
Chapter 6 This cruel calamity of scarcity1 The Role of the Catholic Church
125
Chapter 7 How good people are1 The involvement of women
143
Chapter 9 The brotherhood of mankind1 Donations to the British Relief Association
195
Chapter 10 Without distinction of creed or party nation or colour1 American Aid
221
Chapter 11 The most barbaric nation1 Evangelicals and Charity
257
Thousands have by this means been saved1
277
Notes
293
Appendix
371
Bibliography
377
Index
399

Chapter 8 A gloomy picture of human misery1 The Role of the British Relief Association
167

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About the author (2013)

Christine Kinealy is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin, Ireland, where she earned her doctorate. She is Professor of Irish Studies in the Caspersen Graduate School at Drew University, USA, and, in the spring of 2012, was Visiting Scholar in Residence at Quinnipiac University, USA. She is the author of several books on the Irish Famine, including the award-winning This Great Calamity: The Irish Famine, 1845-52 (2006).

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