by Senia Paseta
This is a book about the Irish Question, or more specifically about Irish Questions. The term has become something of a catch-all, a convenient way to encompass numerous issues and developments which pertain to the political, social, and economic history of modern Ireland. The Irish Question has of course changed: one of the main aims of this book is to explore the complicated and shifting nature of the Irish Question and to assess what it has meant to various political minds and agendas. No other issue brought down as many nineteenth-century governments and no comparable twentieth-century dilemma has matched its ability to frustrate the attempts of British cabinets to find a solution; this inability to find a lasting answer to the Irish Question is especially striking when seen in the context of the massive shifts in British foreign policy brought about by two world wars, decolonization, and the cold war. Senia Paseta charts the changing nature of the Irish Question over the last 200 years, within an international political and social historical context.
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