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The Vanishing Irish
Author: Timothy W. Guinnane

ISBN: 9780691043074
Format: Hardcover
Number Of Pages: 360
Published: 16 September 1997
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2 x 2.3
Description:


In the years between the Great Famine of the 1840s and the First World War, Ireland experienced a drastic drop in population: the percentage of adults who never married soared from 10 percent to 25 percent, while the overall population decreased by one third. What accounted for this? For many social analysts, the history of post-Famine Irish depopulation was a Malthusian morality tale where declining living standards led young people to postpone marriage out of concern for their ability to support a family. The problem here, argues Timothy Guinnane, is that living standards in post-Famine Ireland did "not" decline. Rather, other, more subtle economic changes influenced the decision to delay marriage or not marry at all. In this engaging inquiry into the "vanishing Irish," Guinnane explores the options that presented themselves to Ireland's younger generations, taking into account household structure, inheritance, religion, cultural influences on marriage and family life, and especially emigration.

Guinnane focuses on rural Ireland, where the population changes were most profound, and explores the way the demographic patterns refl...

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