The Great Famine in Irish History Textbooks, 1900–1971

  • Ciara BoylanEmail author
Part of the Critical Approaches to Children's Literature book series (CRACL)


This essay examines history textbooks used in Irish national schools between 1900 and 1971, focusing on the representation of the Great Famine (1845–1852) in these texts. If the education system is one of the key culverts through which official state memory is disseminated and national identity is constructed, the subject of history and its textbooks arguably carry the heaviest ideological burden in this process. This essay assesses the impact of state curricular policy, individual authors and the wider political climate on textbook production in a period of political tension and flux in Ireland. It examines how the discourse of school history and textual production functioned in a climate where politics exercised a notable influence on pedagogy.


Short History National School History Textbook Irish Time Great Famine 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.UNESCO Child and Family Research CentreNUI GalwayGalwayIreland

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