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Hugh McFadden

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The Famine Plot: England's Role in Ireland's Greatest Tragedy
The Famine Plot: England's Role in Ireland's Greatest Tragedy
by Tim Pat Coogan
Edition: Hardcover

50 of 62 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tim Pat Coogan uncovers the Great Famine 'plot', 20 Dec. 2012
Tim Pat Coogan has done Irish historical studies a service by examining carefully British governmental and administrative policy towards Ireland during the 1840s, and it still is a narrative that shocks. The Great Famine was variously referred to as The Great Hunger, or An Gorta Mor. But it was also known as The Great Silence', which can be understood in two different ways. Large areas of rural Ireland, particularly in the West and South-West and North-West were so de-populated that literally these areas went silent. But another way to understand the term 'The Great Silence' is that many, many Irish people who survived the Famine would not talk about it because they were too traumatised by its horrors to speak of it. And for several generations afterwards the topic was not properly examined by the historians and academics. The 1930-60 generation of Irish academic historians (revisionists) almost bent over backwards to explain and excuse the British administrations of the 1840s in terms of laissez faire economic policies and Malthusian theories: 'A million deaths might not be enough to solve the problem ... for the big landowners... etc. We still have our forelock-tuggers who baulk at criticising the British administrators. The minds of these people are still colonised. Hats off to Tim Pat Coogan for having the courage to call it for what it was ... genocide, an Irish holocaust offered up to the free market economy. [Hugh McFadden]
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 8, 2014 6:23 PM BST

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