Ireland and the Irish in Interwar England

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Cambridge University Press, Apr 3, 2014 - History - 378 pages
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To what extent did the Irish disappear from English politics, life and consciousness following the Anglo-Irish War? Mo Moulton offers a new perspective on this question through an analysis of the process by which Ireland and the Irish were redefined in English culture as a feature of personal life and civil society rather than a political threat. Considering the Irish as the first postcolonial minority, she argues that the Irish case demonstrates an English solution to the larger problem of the collapse of multi-ethnic empires in the twentieth century. Drawing on an array of new archival evidence, Moulton discusses the many varieties of Irishness present in England during the 1920s and 1930s, including working-class republicans, relocated southern loyalists, and Irish enthusiasts. The Irish connection was sometimes repressed, but it was never truly forgotten; this book recovers it in settings as diverse as literary societies, sabotage campaigns, drinking clubs, and demonstrations.
 

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This a fine, well written, and well balanced study and no reader with an interest in the topic will be dissatisfied. For example, Moulton lucidly and elegantly explains the tortuously difficult to understand process of Anglo-Irish decline and compensation after the Irish War of Independence without any of the usual claims and counter claims associated with this needlessly controversial topic.
Barry Keane
 

Contents

fighting
17
The postwar international order and the mobilization
48
Irish nationalists in England
102
the Treaty of 1921
135
Politics and the AngloIrish relationship
157
The cultural persistence of Irishness
174
the AngloIrish
206
The Irish in England and the failure of ethnic politics
241
Immigration and accommodation in Irish England
271
1939 and the salience of Irishness
306
the first decolonization?
330
Bibliography
338
Index
369
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About the author (2014)

Mo Moulton is a lecturer in history and literature at Harvard University.

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