Ireland and Empire


History 6686

Fall 2013

TH 5:30-8

TLC 3205


Dr. Michael de Nie              

TLC 3204

Office Hours: Tuesday 10-11, 1-3, Thursday 10-11, 1-5, and by appointment

Tel.: 678.839.6033



This reading seminar will provide students with an understanding of the evolution and current state of the historiography of Ireland’s engagement with the British Empire. We will begin by reading some of the more notable general approaches to and theories of Ireland and empire and then examine in turn the topics that have figured most prominently in this scholarship. These include Ireland’s colonial status, Ireland and imperial service, nationalism and empire, unionism and empire, the Irish press and empire, and imperial soldiering.


Grade: Your grade in this course will be based on three 10-12 page essays (75%) and participation (25%). I do not accept late or electronically submitted papers.


Required Reading:


Terrence McDonough (ed.), Was Ireland a Colony?

Senia Pašeta, Modern Ireland: A Very Short Introduction


The remaining readings will be found in .pdf format on CourseDen.


Statement on Plagiarism

Please note that anyone committing plagiarism in any written assignment will earn an F for the course and may face further disciplinary action. Plagiarism is defined in the University of West Georgia Handbook as “representing the words or ideas of another as one’s own. Direct quotations must be indicated and ideas of another must be appropriately acknowledged.” Please see the UWG’s History Department statement on plagiarism at and the UWG English Department’s guide for avoiding plagiarism at:



Students, please carefully review the following information. It contains important material pertaining to your rights and responsibilities in this class. Because these statements are updated as federal, state, and university accreditation standards change, you should review the information each semester.



Course Schedule and Assignments:


Week One (Aug. 29)                        Introduction


Week Two (Sept. 5)                         Approaches/Theory I



Keith Jefferey, “Introduction,” in Keith Jefferey (ed.), An Irish Empire?(Manchester, 1996), 1-24

Thomas Bartlett, “‘This famous island set in a Virginian sea’: Ireland in the British Empire, 1690-1801,” in P.J. Marshall (ed.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: The Eighteenth Century (Oxford, 1998), 253-275

David Fitzpatrick, “Ireland and Empire,” in Andrew Porter, The Oxford History of the British Empire: The Nineteenth Century (Oxford, 1999), 495-521

Stephen Howe, Ireland and Empire: Colonial Legacies in Irish History and Culture (Oxford, 2000), 1-106, 230-243



Week Three (Sept. 12)        Approaches/Theory II



Kevin Kenny, “Introduction,” “The Irish in the Empire,” in Kevin Kenny (ed.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: Ireland and the British Empire (Oxford, 2004), 1-25, 90-122

Joe Cleary, “Amongst Empires: A Short History of Ireland and Empire Studies in International Context,” Éire-Ireland 42, 1-2 (2007): 11-57

Linda Connolly, “The Limits of ‘Irish Studies’: historicism, culturalism, paternalism,” in Eóin Flannery and Angus Mirtchell (eds.), Enemies of Empire: New perspectives on imperialism, literature and historiography (Dublin, 2007), 189-210

Stephen Howe, Minding the Gaps: New Directions in the Study of Ireland and Empire,” Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History 37:1 (Mar. 2009): 135-149

Jill Bender, “Ireland and Empire” in    (forthcoming), 1-25



Week Four (Sept. 19)                      Was Ireland a Colony?



Terrence McDonough (ed.), Was Ireland a Colony?  vii-65, 145-185, 212-259, 326-333

Stephen Howe, “Questioning the (bad) question: ‘Was Ireland a Colony?’” Irish Historical Studies 36:142 (2008): 138-152



Week Five (Sept. 26)                       Imperial Networks and Service



Richard Hawkins, “The ‘Irish Model’ and the empire: a case for reassessment,” in David Anderson and David Killingray, Policing the Empire: Government, Authority, and Control, 1830-1940 (Manchester, 1991), 18-32

Hiram Morgan, “An Unwelcome Heritage: Ireland’s Role in British Empire Building,” History of European Ideas 19 (July 1994): 619-25

Jenifer Ridden, “Britishness as an imperial and diasporic identity: Irish elite perspectives, c. 1820-70s,” in Peter Gray (ed.), Victoria’s Ireland? (Dublin, 2004), 88-105

Colin Barr, “'Imperium in Imperio': Irish Episcopal Imperialism in the Nineteenth Century,” The English Historical Review 123:502 (June 2008): 611-650

Fiona Bateman, “Ireland’s Spiritual Empire: Territory and Landscape in Catholic Missionary Discourse,” in Hilary M. Carey (ed.), Empires of Religion (Cambridge, 2008), 267-287

Mark Quintanilla, “‘From a Dear and Worthy Land:’ Michael Keane and the Irish in the Eighteenth-Century Irish West Indies,” New Hibernia Review 13:4 (winter 2009): 59-76

Barry Crosbie, Irish Imperial Networks: Migration, Social Communication and Exchange in Nineteenth-Century India (Cambridge, 2012), 1-23, 64-98, 169-204, 253-262


Paper #1 Due



Week Six (Oct. 3)     Nationalism and Empire I



John Crangle, “Irish nationalist criticism of the imperial administration of India,” Quarterly Review of Historical Studies 11:4 (Dec., 1972): 189-94

H.V. Brasted, “Irish Nationalism and the British Empire in the Late Nineteenth Century,” in Oliver MacDonagh, W.F. Mandle, and Pauric Travers (eds.), Irish Culture and Nationalism, 1750-1950 (Canberra, 1983), 83-103

Donal P. McCracken, Forgotten Protest: Ireland and the Anglo-Boer War (Belfast, 2003), xv-xxi, 31-36, 39-86, 100-110, 143-152

Carla King, “Michael Davitt, Irish Nationalism and the British empire in the late nineteenth century,” in Peter Gray (ed.), Victoria’s Ireland? (Dublin, 2004), 116-130

Niamh Lynch, “Defining Irish Nationalist Anti-Imperialism: Thomas Davis and John Mitchel,” Éire-Ireland 42:1&2 (Spring/Summer, 2007): 82-107

Paula Collombier-Lakeman, “Ireland and Empire: The Ambivalence of Irish Constitutional Nationalism,” Radical History Review 2009:104 (2009): 57-76



Week Seven (Oct. 10)         Nationalism and Empire II



Paul A. Townend‘No Imperial Privilege:’ Justin McCarthy, Home Rule, and Empire,” Éire-Ireland 42:1&2 (Spring/Summer, 2007): 201-228

Paul A. Townend, “Between Two Worlds: Irish Nationalists and Imperial Crisis 1878-1880,” Past & Present 194 (February, 2007): 139-174

Niall Whelehan, “Skirmishing, The Irish World, and Empire, 1876–86,” Éire-Ireland 42:1&2 (Spring/Summer, 2007): 180-200

Matthew Kelly, “Irish Nationalist Opinion and the British Empire in the 1850s and 1860s,” Past and Present 204:1 (2009): 127-154

Bruce Nelson, Irish Nationalists and the Making of the Irish Race, (Princeton, 2012), 121-147



Week Eight (Oct. 17)                       Unionism, Ulster, and Empire



Alvin Jackson “Irish Unionist and Empire, 1880-1920: classes and masses,” in Keith Jefferey (ed.), An Irish Empire? (Manchester, 1996), 123-148

Donal Lowry, “Ulster Resistance and loyalist rebellion in the empire,” in Keith Jefferey (ed.), An Irish Empire? (Manchester, 1996), 191-216

David Hume, “Empire Day in Ireland, 1862-1962,” in Keith Jefferey (ed.), An Irish Empire? (Manchester, 1996), 149-168

Philip Ollernshaw, “Businessmen in Northern Ireland and the imperial connection, 1886-1939,” in Keith Jefferey (ed.), An Irish Empire? (Manchester, 1996), 169-190

Kent Fedorowich, “The Problems of Disbandment: The Royal Irish Constabulary and Imperial Migration, 1919-2,” Irish Historical Studies, 30:117 (May, 1996): pp. 88-110

Alvin Jackson, “Ireland, the Union, and the Empire, 1800-1960,” in Kevin Kenny (ed.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: Ireland and the British Empire (Oxford, 2004), 123-153

Mark Doyle, “The Sepoys of the Pound and Sandy Row: Empire and Identity in Mid-Victorian Belfast,” Journal of Urban History 36:6 (Nov. 2010): 849-867



Week Nine (Oct. 24)                        Ireland and India I



H.V. Brasted, “Indian national development and the influence of Irish Home Rule, 1870-1886,” Modern Asian Studies 14:1 (1980): 37-63

Richard Davis, “The influence of the Irish Revolution on Indian nationalism: the evidence of the press, 1916-1922,” South Asia 9:2 (1986): 55-68

S.B. Cook, Imperial Affinities: Nineteenth Century Analogies and Exchanges Between India and Ireland (New Delhi, 1993), 9-38, 130-137

T.G. Fraser, “Ireland and India,” in Keith Jefferey (ed.), An Irish Empire? (Manchester, 1996), 77-93

S.B. Cook, “The Irish Raj: Social Origins and Careers of Irishmen in the Indian Civil Service, 1855-1914,” Journal of Social History 20:3 (spring 1997): 507-529

Sarmila Bose and Eilís Ward, “‘India’s cause is Ireland’s cause:’ elite links and nationalist politics,” in   Michael Holmes and Denis Holmes (eds.), Ireland and India: Connections, Comparisons, Contrasts (Dublin, 1997), 52-73



Week Ten (Oct. 31)               NO CLASS



Week Eleven (Nov. 7)         Ireland and India II



C. A. Bayly, “Ireland, India and the Empire: 1780-1914,” Transactions of the Royal Historical Society Sixth Series, Vol. 10 (2000): 377-397

Michael Silvestri, “‘315 million of India with Ireland to the last:’ Irish and Indian nationalists in North America,” in Tadgh Foley and Maureen O’Connor (eds.), Ireland and India (Dublin, 2006), 244-255

Ciara Boylan, “Victorian ideologies of improvement: Sir Charles Trevelyan in India and Ireland,” in Tadgh Foley and Maureen O’Connor (eds.), Ireland and India (Dublin, 2006), 167-178

Kate O’Malley, “Ireland, India, and empire: separatist political links and perceived threats to the British Empire,” in Tadgh Foley and Maureen O’Connor (eds.), Ireland and India (Dublin, 2006), 226-232

Caiolfhionn Bheacháin, “Ireland a warning to India;” Anti-imperialist solidarity in the Irish Free State,” in Tadgh Foley and Maureen O’Connor (eds.), Ireland and India (Dublin, 2006), 268-278

Jill Bender, “The Imperial Politics of Famine: The 1873–74 Bengal Famine and Irish Parliamentary Nationalism,” Éire-Ireland, 42:1&2 (Spring/Summer 2007): 132-156

Michael Silvestri, Ireland and India: Nationalism, Empire and Memory (New York, 2009), 1-12, 176-207, 208-214


Paper #2 Due



Week Twelve (Nov. 14)       The Press and Empire



Jill Bender, “Mutiny or freedom fight? The 1857 Indian Mutiny and the Irish press,” in Simon Potter (ed.), Newspapers and Empire in Ireland and Britain (Dublin, 2004), 92-108

Patrick Maume, “The Irish Independent and empire, 1891-1919,” in Potter, Newspapers and Empire (Dublin, 2004), 124-142

Ian Sheehy, “‘The view from Fleet Street’: Irish nationalist journalists in London and their attitudes toward empire, 1892-1898,” in Potter, Newspapers and Empire (Dublin, 2004), 143-158

Donal Lowry, “Nationalist and unionist responses to the British empire in the age of the South African War, 1899-1902,” in Potter, Newspapers and Empire (Dublin, 2004), 159-176

Úna Bhroimél, “The South African War, empire and the Irish World, 1899-1902,” in Potter, Newspapers and Empire (Dublin, 2004), 195-216

Jennifer Regan, “‘We could be of service to other suffering people:’ Representations of India in the Irish Nationalist Press, c.1857-1887,” Victorian Periodicals Review 41:1 (spring 2008): 61-77

Jill Bender, “The Irish ‘Sepoy’ Press: Irish Nationalism and anti-British agitation during the 1857 Indian Rebellion,” in Brad and Kathryn Patterson (eds.), Ireland and the Irish Antipodes: One World or Worlds Apart? (Sydney, 2010), 241-251

Michael de Nie, “‘Speed the Mahdi!” The Irish Press and Empire during the Sudan Conflict of 1883–1885,” Journal of British Studies, 51:4 (October 2012): 883-909



Week Thirteen (Nov. 21)     Soldiering for Empire




Peter Karsten, “Irish Soldiers in the British Army, 1792-1922: Suborned or Subordinate?” Journal of Social History XVII (Fall 1983): 31-64

Terence Denman, “'The Red Livery of Shame': The Campaign against Army Recruitment in Ireland, 1899-1914,” Irish Historical Studies 29:114 (Nov., 1994): 208-233

Keith Jefferey, “The Irish military tradition and the British empire,” in Keith Jefferey (ed.), An Irish Empire? (Manchester, 1996), 94-122

Terence Denman, “‘Ethnic Soldiers Pure and Simple'? The Irish in the Late Victorian British Army,” War In History 1996 3 (3): 253-273

E.M. Spiers, “Army organisation and society in the nineteenth century,” in Thomas Bartlett and Keith Jeffery (eds.), A military history of Ireland (Cambridge, 1996), 335-357

Thomas Bartlett, “The Irish Soldier in India, 1750-1947,” in Michael Holmes and Denis Holmes (eds.), Ireland and India: Connections, Comparisons, Contrasts (Dublin, 1997), 12-28

Jean and Desmond Bowen, Heroic Option: The Irish in the British Army (Barnsley, 2005), 122-158

Alexander Bubb, “The Life of the Irish Soldier in India: Representations and Self-Representations, 1857-1922,” Modern Asian Studies 46:4 (2012): 769-813

Tim McMahon, ““Dash and Daring: Imperial Violence and Irish Ambiguity,” in Sean Farrell and Danine Farquharson (eds)., Shadows of the Gunmen: Considerations about Violence in Irish History (Dublin, 2008), 79-89

Peter Bailey, “Irishmen in the East India Company Army,” Irish Family History 17 (2001): 84-92 (GET)



Week Fourteen (Nov. 28)   Thanksgiving Break, NO CLASS



Week Fifteen (Dec. 5)         Ireland and Empire, 1922-present



Deirdre McMahon, “Ireland, the Empire, and the Commonwealth,” in Kevin Kenny (ed.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: Ireland and the British Empire (Oxford, 2004), 182-219

Joe Cleary, “Postcolonial Ireland,” in Kevin Kenny (ed.), The Oxford History of the British Empire: Ireland and the British Empire (Oxford, 2004), 251-288

Jason K. Knirck, “The Dominion of Ireland: The Anglo-Irish Treaty in an Imperial Context,” Éire-Ireland 42:1&2 (Spring/Summer, 2007): 229-255

Caoilfhionn Bheacháin, "The Mosquito Press": Anti-Imperialist Rhetoric in Republican Journalism, 1926-39,” Éire-Ireland 42:1&2 (Spring/Summer, 2007): 256-289

Kate O’Malley, Ireland, India and empire: Indo-Irish Radical Connections, 1919-1964 (Manchester, 2008), 1-52


Paper #3 Due



Week Sixteen (Dec. 12)                  Conclusions