There is no longer anything you could describe as a self-conscious ' Irish community' in Liverpool. Indeed, some Irish nationalists over the years had occasion to criticise the city and its inhabitants for not demonstrating the usual signs of a diaspora community. This book makes clear why that is, why this English city characterised by massive Irish immigration over many decades and with a lively sense of its diversity seems sometimes blind to its most significant ethnic group,indeed the largest single element of its population.
The reason is simple, we became the defining identity for the city: we changed the way Liverpudlians talk, both in accent/intonation and style. Listen to their intonation, the music of a group of Liverpudlians talking animatedly then what comes to mind is Dublin (with a hint of North Wales). Belchem's book is a thoroughly documented, sober account of the fortunes of the Liverpool Irish which sees the confident, if at times touchy, proletarian Scouser identity as a belated self-assertion and final revenge of the poorest strata of inner-city Irish immigrant communities.
Interestingly people in other parts of England (assuming the city itself is in England) hold prejudices concerning the city and its people which are more or less identical, for good or ill, with those traditionally held about the Irish.