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Atlas of the Great Irish Famine Hardcover – August 1, 2012


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Atlas of the Great Irish Famine + A New Genealogical Atlas of Ireland, Second Edition
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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Just when it seems that print reference books are inching toward a reliquary fate, new ones are published that belie this notion. This physically substantial volume—replete with impressive color photographs, illustrations, and maps—is such a source. Palpably solid and sturdy in hand, the content is equally weighty and significant, covering details of demographics, geography, history, politics, economics, and folklore surrounding the most pivotal event of Irish history. Sweeping in scope and painstaking in detail, the atlas offers multiple perspectives and insights by way of first-person oral and written accounts, poetry, art, photography, and scholarship. Organized into sections such as “Population Decline and Social Transformations,” “Witnessing the Famine,” “The Scattering,” “Legacy,” and “Remembering the Famine,” the volume is also complemented by numerous charts, tables, and graphs delineating various statistical aspects of the Great Famine. Examples include tables showing the size of the potato crop, mortality rates by gender, number and destination of famine emigrants, and knowledge of the Irish language by province. Smaller chapters within the sections cover interesting topics like “Irish Famine Refugees and the Emergence of the Glasgow Celtic Football Club.” Additionally, the book provides primary resources, which are both stark and heartbreaking. For example, a photograph of a handwritten note directs the deceased of a workhouse to be buried without coffins because of financial constraints. Another such note indicates that the destitute Irish immigrants arriving in Liverpool in 1847 are to be sent back to their homes—a fate that befell 15,000 in that year alone. Though accessibly written, the volume also retains its scholarly tone, with more than 25 pages of endnotes. Overall, this resource is an example of how well done print reference can still be, and is well worth the price for all types of libraries. --Michael Tosko

Review

"Crowley, William J. Smyth, and Mike Murphy (geography, geography emeritus, and cartographer, geography, respectively, University Coll., Cork, Ireland) have made a valuable contribution to studies of the Irish famine of the 1840s with this physically immense book that combines a classic atlas's functions with broader concerns." -Library Journal

"The Atlas achieves the remarkable feat of communicating both the most technical aspects of the famine as well as the most emotional...[as] the most thorough portrait of the famine to date, [it] puts us on the right side--the aware and communicative side, that is--of history."-Irish America Review of Books

"Sweeping in scope and painstaking in detail, the atlas offers multiple perspectives and insights by way of first-person oral and written accounts, poetry, art, photography, and scholarship."- STARRED Booklist

"The Atlas is an important attempt to give an extremely wide-ranging and balanced overview of the Great Hunger."-Durrants

"Cork University Press has established an enviably high reputation in producing atlases. The latest – of the Great Irish Famine – maintains and enhances this record. Not only are the maps themselves innovative and attractive to look at, but they communicate clearly an abundance of information, often unfamiliar. The cartography is accompanied by a wealth of other images, sometimes strikingly beautiful, and also hauntingly distressful. In addition, a starry cast of experts provides incisive and illuminating commentary on all aspects of the disaster.  All in all, this is likely to prove one of the most original and enduring studies of the grievous famine."-Toby Barnard,Oxford University

"The Atlas is an indispensable reference work and is precisely the sort of composite effort that will improve our understanding of the Famine."-Times Literary Supplement

"This Atlas offers a powerful, unflinching and coherent understanding of the Irish Famine as the defining event in Irish history. It balances sweeping survey with minute details, while always attending to the surprising diversity of this small island in the mid nineteenth century. Its unparalleled assemblage of new maps, old images and extensive documentation offers a brilliant teaching aid for the history of Ireland and of the Irish diaspora. Firmly rooted in recent research, saturated in meticulous scholarship, and interdisciplinary in the best sense, it is unafraid to draw the necessary trenchant conclusions. Its broad synthesis offers the best overview we have ever had of this traumatic and defining episode."-Kevin Whelan,Keough Naughton Notre Dame Centre, Dublin

“a powerful, unflinching account of the Famine as the defining event in Irish history…firmly rooted in recent scholarship…it has been a long time since an Irish- studies book appeared that everyone should read”-Irish Times

"This work offers accounts found in written and oral sources, and poetry, art, and photography, all enhanced by 200 new digitized maps to create a picture of this pivotal event."-Library Journal Reviews

"Its fascinating information puts the famine into historical context, illustrated with full-color maps, line drawings, photos, documents and tables on nearly every page."- Family Tree Magazine

"Atlas of the Great Irish Famine succeeds in integrating scholarly elucidation of the tragedy and exploration of the human cost with accounts that still have the power to shock after 160 years."-Victorian Studies

"This monumental work is strongly recommended for any library collection that includes Irish history, US immigration, or studies of the developing world."- Choice

"This monumental work is far more than an Atlas, it is the definitive summary of all aspects of the Great Irish Famine. The many maps are accompanied by accessible yet scientifically sound texts. The demographics and  geography are surveyed with unequaled detail and care, yet the historical background, the politics, and the economics of the Famine are discussed at an equally high scholarly level. Lavishly illustrated and scholarly immaculate, written by the best scholars in the field, this volume belongs in the library of everyone interested in the greatest natural disaster of the modern age."-Joel Mokyr,Northwestern University
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 728 pages
  • Publisher: NYU Press; 1 edition (August 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0814771483
  • ISBN-13: 978-0814771488
  • Product Dimensions: 2 x 9.5 x 12 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #362,813 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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See all 11 customer reviews
This book tells the story.
Mac Giolla
From what I saw in those few minutes I had to peruse, the book looked well worth its cost.
Leo's Folks
The maps and illustrations are excellent.
Michael Coyne

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Mac Giolla on October 22, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It is heavy, don't know exactly, a couple of kilos at least. It's fat - haven't counted the pages. Cramer, in Seinfeld, would call it a coffee-table book, but what a book. From the very first moment I opened it, tears have not been very far away, and then, when I give any chapter a read, I find tears welling up. Dry statistics do it, or diary entries of a visitor to Ireland before and during the great famine. And yes, my worst estimate were confirmed. The lastest calculations on the population of Ireland in the year before the famine (1845) stand at 8,700,000. We are still a long way off. As of 2011 the population of the whole island of Ireland stands at 6,4 million - still short by 2,3 million. Why, why, why? This book tells the story.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Leo's Folks on January 1, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
After seeing this history book mentioned in our local newspaper, we purchased this history book as a present for dear dad. It felt ironic to be giving him such a heavy hardcover tome after he has taken so quickly to reading all his books on his kindle and reading his newspaper on his computer. As I sat to wrap it, I flipped through and realized how hard it was going to be to hand it over. There is so much compelling information there, I want to read these accounts and study these maps, and learn what the authors have gathered about the famine that caused such losses, and forced migrations of families such as ours (through Wales). From what I saw in those few minutes I had to peruse, the book looked well worth its cost. Certainly I will need to borrow the book from dear dad, because this well compiled wealth of true accounts implores me to spend several evenings diving in to learn the truth about the depth and breadth of the irish famine. I definitely would have loved to buy the title in electronic form, but then there wouldn't have been the same "impressive weight" which gives our sense of touch a measure of the importance and impact of the Great Irish Famine. As for how it was received - dear dad has long been fascinated by history and geography - and in the case of the Great Irish Famine, how the famine caused his ancestors living in Ireland to migrate to Wales before going on to migrate to the US. Am I repeating myself? Ah, well, the book looks very impressive, and glossing through it proves it is very impressive. So if you know you are passionate about history, this will be a welcome tome for you to immerse yourself into!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Brian Phelan on December 28, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This book is BIG. Not something you can read sitting up in bed.

The illustrations are wonderful with many interesting colour photographs of the relics of the Famine, work houses, follies, rural landscape.

Living in Ireland these reminders are everywhere and I'll have to seek out the ones I'm not familiar with.

Good blend of the academic and popular.

There's a couple of chapters at the end about modern famines, attitudes and responses.

It'll take me months to get through it but I'm looking forward to the experience.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Robert W. Shuford on February 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Bought this for my wife for Christmas, and she has been delving into it ever since. Very well written for an atlas, this book is an inexhaustible source of information on Ireland.
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Superb.And covers every aspect of the Famine and its aftermath.I was especially interested in the 'essay' on Connemara by Kathleen Villiers-Tuthill.From this part of Galway,The Ballinakill Civil Parish) came my g-father who emigrated in 1888.His parents had lived through the Famine in one of the most desolated districts of Ireland.The population statistics give the brutal story.The maps and illustrations are excellent.And Ulster is also included which supplies some of the comparative relations between the provinces.My maternal g-parent hailed from Ahoghill,Antrim.His experience of the famine aftermath were much different from that of the other grand parent.!
This Atlas covers it all.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Stefani Koorey on November 21, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This tome is everything it purports to be and then some. I am very happy with this purchase and would recommend it to anyone interested in studying the history of Ireland, the Great Irish Famine, or doing some genealogical study of a family member. Full of illustrations, graphs, charts, it is chocked full. A definitive work.
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