• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Outline the Causes and course of the Irish Famine of 1845-51.

Extracts from this document...


Outline the Causes and course of the Irish Famine of 1845-51. Briefly comment on its subsequent impact in Ireland and people of Irish descent.] The Irish Famine, although a pivotal event in the development of modern Ireland, was for decades marginalised or ignored by Irish historians. Between 1846 and 1851 more than a million Irish people, the famine emigrants, sailed to America. At the same time, the Irish potato famine claimed a million lives. Thus the famine had a huge impact on Ireland and it's people. "The famine of 1845-9 is a major dividing-line in the history of modem Ireland. Politically, economically and socially, the period that followed it appears sharply distinct from the period that preceded it." - JC Beckett, The Making of Modern Ireland, Queen's University. There are various reasons for the cause of the Irish famine - many historians have summed up the Great Famine's cause as "Nature caused the potato blight. The British government caused the famine", which can be supported through the policies that the British government maintained towards the Irish population during the famine years. ...read more.


When blight damaged nearly half the crop in 1845, millions of peasants faced a winter of partial famine. Continuous rain until March 1846 provided ideal conditions for the spread of the fungus and the worst conditions for those already succumbing to starvation and disease. Ireland as a nation had very little industrialization throughout its land and remained an agrarian country and society, coming to rely heavily on the potato crop as the main source of food. The poor class in Ireland, often landless and mostly tenant farmers, were the main group that solely survived on the potato crop. When the potato crop disease spread from Europe and eastern U.S. to Ireland, the first hit were the poor class of Ireland whose lively-hood depended on the potato crop. Many British viewed the Irish as a backward nation full of ignorant, lazy and uneducated masses causing many British to view the famine as an act of God or divine intervention that was meant to change the Irish. ...read more.


Peel also ordered the Board of Works to create relief employment to those who were suffering from the famine and provide wages to them as well as structural improvements throughout Ireland, which did help the Irish population and not many died from starvation and disease in the year 1845-1849 population and not many died from starvation and disease in the year 1845-1846. Politically, as well as economically and socially, the famine had a profound influence on later developments. It left in the popular mind a feeling of resentment against the whole system of government in Ireland; and from this time onwards Irish nationalism takes on a new bitterness, particularly among the emigrants in America. The impact on the US of the arrival of waves of Irish who were bitter about the British Government's treatment of the famine (they saw it as English treatment of the famine) ... then to the growth of violent Irish nationalism with the Fenians. However, the famine was a highly significant event and its impacts upon Irish people are still being felt today. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree UK Government & Parliamentary Studies section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree UK Government & Parliamentary Studies essays

  1. Examine the role of Gandhi in the development of Indian nationalism

    So, Gandhi's role in this event? Well clearly he was apart of it, he was involved in a lot of key policies and indeed spent most of his life working toward achieving independence. However so had a lot of people, so was it really Gandhi that brought about change.

  2. Why was Ireland partitioned in the 1920's?

    The exclusivist nature of their propaganda which included a commitment to the Gaelic language, fed the fears and prejudices of Ulster Protestants who already looked askance at the somewhat naive inclusiveness of constitutional nationalism and saw no place for themselves in an all Irish Ireland.

  1. European Union: Council of Ministers.

    Should Greece be pressured to open more friendly dialogue with Turkey or vice versa? What would be an ideal date for Turkey to join? Is there a clear strategy for Turkey? Does Turkey have a clear strategy? Bloc Positions Turkey is condemned from all corners of the globe for its actions in contravention of international standards for human rights.

  2. Why do Historians Differ in Their Views of These Historical Characters

    She does have some praise for Liverpool she describes him as a 'man conscientiously devoted to the service and the real good of his country'. This source could be unreliable because she could just be praising Liverpool for the simple reason that he is a Tory and so is she.

  1. What were the major causes of the Civil War?

    There were many reasons for the increased anti-slavery sentiment. Many in the North felt that slavery was incompatible with the American constitution and its ideals such as liberty. By 1840 there was no slavery in Northern States and many Northerner's saw slavery as a Southern culture that was alien to them.

  2. 1169: English first arrive in Ireland 1690: Battle of the ...

    crowned himself King of Ireland and formed Protestantism. Supporters of the Protestant belief were given greater priority over Catholics in land, employment and status. Followers of the Catholic faith resented him and the English and they caused minor rebellions simultaneously over Ireland.

  1. A Discussion of Aid and Development in Zimbabwe.

    The World Bank was established in 1945 at the 'Bretton Woods Conference' in New Hampshire, USA. Here America, Canada and the UK created the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the International Fund for Reconstruction and Development (IFRD), the IFRD became more popularly known as the World Bank.

  2. Why was Irish Homerule not introduced by 1914 ?

    Many of the immigrants tended to drink and gamble excessively and so the general public as well as the politicians did not have a particularly high opinion of the Irish people. Many opponents to Home Rule also pointed out that the idea was impractical due to the high proportion of

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work