Printing, Literacy, and Education in Eighteenth-century Ireland: Why the Irish Speak English

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Edwin Mellen Press, 2005 - History - 211 pages
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This book details the history of the spread of printing and literacy in eighteenth century Ireland. In addition to being a historical survey, it is also a study, in the media ecological vein, that explores what happens when a new technology is introduced to a given culture. This work answers three key questions: first, why did print technology take so long (300 years after Gutenberg) to become a cultural influence in Ireland; second, why was there an explosion of printing and presses in Ireland between 1750 and 1800 and finally, why, when a printing industry had been established, was almost the entire output of printed literature in English rather than the Irish language? This book is a masterful and carefully researched contribution to both the study of how technology changes culture and Irish studies.

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