Cian T. McMahon: The Global Dimensions of Saint Patrick

But while Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations have often brought people together under the banner of “Irishness,” they have also served as bellwethers for deep-rooted concerns. After achieving political independence from Britain in the early 1920s, for example, the Irish government sought to consolidate their claims to respectability by prohibiting the sale of alcohol on the saint’s feast day. Throughout the twentieth century, Saint Patrick’s Day parades in Ireland were dour, formal affairs, often conducted through driving curtains of spring rain. Continue Reading Cian T. McMahon: The Global Dimensions of Saint Patrick

David T. Gleeson: Irish Confederates and the Meaning of American Nationalism

As an immigrant, something I’m familiar with myself, one’s sense of identity is heightened by the immigration experience. In your new country, even when your language is the same as the natives, you suddenly you have an “accent,” your religion and culture are different, and you must adapt to new social and political realities. Immigrants then give us valuable insights, not only into their own changing identity, but also that of the host country. Irish immigrants in the South had to become Americans and Confederates. They had to negotiate the cultural traits they brought from Ireland with the demands of loyalty to their new home. And, it was this Irish cultural baggage which played the key role in binding them to the United States and the Confederacy Continue Reading David T. Gleeson: Irish Confederates and the Meaning of American Nationalism

David T. Gleeson: Immigrants and American Wars: The Irish Confederate Experience

Rather than becoming southern “under fire,” they became southern by misremembering, reimagining, and reinterpreting the real experience of being under fire. Continue Reading David T. Gleeson: Immigrants and American Wars: The Irish Confederate Experience