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Irish Potato Famine of the mid 19th Century - Essay Example

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Irish Potato Famine of the mid 19th Century

This was only in a time period between 1845 and 1852. Although the famine was caused by the bacteria phytophthora infestans, it had various social political dimensions. Even though most of the damage was done on crops, the damage that was caused on the Irish population remains to be some of the most memorable events in the Irish people. The great famine still remains a major topic of debate in the life of the people.
The scar of the famine remains in the minds of most Irish people more that one century later. It still remains to spark memories of the suffering and agony that the people of Ireland had to go thro ugh in the hands of their masters who were the Britons. It still remains them of the long walk to acquire their current social status and equity to the Britons. But the role that was played by this great famine in shaping the identity of the Irish people is still evident even today through the imprint shown by the modern consciousness which equate horror of famine devastation with other tragedies that continue to occur in the developing world. This is because the nature of the Irish nation dependant on the foreign nations was the sole cause of the devastation since the foreign nation had the power to manipulate the famine and control the nation. This is the same fate that holds the developing nation to the control of the foreign nation. (Bluett, 2004)
In this case the Irish people dependant and exploitation by Britain can be directly attributed to the devastating effects of the famine. Their reliance on the British government was the main factor that led to their exploitation. There is evident of hidden agenda in the way Britain foreign relief was used to mask the indirect cultural and religious cleansing that was being carried out on Irish people at the time. The only alternative that the Irish people had was either to live as slave or die as freeman. Therefore the British had the chance to make the Irish dance to their tune and instill their control over the nations. (Connolly, 1998)
Background of the famines and the Ireland relations with Britain
Before 1801, Ireland had remained to the colony of Britain and it was recognized as the most fertile colony. In 1801, it ceased to the British colony and formed its own parliament. This was the outcome of the act of union which made it an integrate part of the United Kingdom which comprised of Greta Britain and Ireland. There were many factors that led to the signing of the Act of union which was entirely aimed at securing control of Ireland by the Britain. The America was of independence encourage the Irish to wage the same war in order to liberate themselves from the rule of Britons. The French revolution was another factor. There were fears that the rate of French revolution was very fast and soon French militants would be at Irish coast. This endangered the control of Ireland by the British. Ireland was also weakly linked to Britain and there was need to have a strong link such that it would be protected in case of attack. The monarch felt that there was a weak control of Ireland and therefore there was a need to sign the union which would give the monarch more control. There were also other internal factors like ...Show more


The Great Irish famine which happened in the mid 19th century still remains to be eon of the most remembered event in the history of the country. It has also been considered as one of the greatest peacetime tragedies in the history of Europe. It was one of the events that led to the Irish nation to carry out major economic and social reforms due to the devastating effects of het famine…
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