Faith and fatherland: cultural nationalism and the Irish press in mid-Victorian England

McNicholas, A. 2010. Faith and fatherland: cultural nationalism and the Irish press in mid-Victorian England. Cultural Studies. 24 (6), pp. 821-835.

TitleFaith and fatherland: cultural nationalism and the Irish press in mid-Victorian England
AuthorsMcNicholas, A.
Abstract

Emigration from Ireland during and after the Famine of 1845-50 was unparalleled in the nineteenth century. By 1890, 40 per cent of those born in Ireland were living outside of it - in Britain, North America and the rest of the English-speaking world. In tandem with this process was a burgeoning nationalist politics which sought the separation of Ireland from England. Widely described at the time as a haemorrhaging of its population, which would lead to the nation's disappearance, emigration had centripetal as well as centrifugal effects, and Ireland as a nation was arguably imagined as much outside as inside the national territory. The nationalist newspapers of the Irish diaspora were central to this process; organising and sustaining political movements across vast distances and acting as a vehicle for the cultural nationalism which provided their intellectual and emotional underpinning.

This cultural aspect of Irish nationalism has heretofore been largely associated with either the 1840s Young Ireland movement and the early Nation, and fin-de-siecle movements in sport, language and literature. However, an examination of the press of the Irish migrants in the Britain of the 1860s, the poetry, drama and prose as well as the news content, suggests there was much greater continuity of such effort between the earlier and later periods.

This article will present an overview of some key issues. In particular, to explore what is the place of the press of the Irish immigrants of 1860s England in the development of Irish nationalism in general and in Irish cultural nationalism in particular?

JournalCultural Studies
Journal citation24 (6), pp. 821-835
ISSN0950-2386
YearNov 2010
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1080/09502386.2010.502736
Publication dates
PublishedNov 2010

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