BOOK LIST : Navigation Buttons to the
TO THESE CHALLENGING AND REVISIONIST STUDIES OF IRISH HISTORY
My Name is Desmond Keenan, Ph.D. in economics and sociology especially in their
historical aspects. My doctoral thesis (not
included in this website) was on the sociological aspects of the Catholic Church
in nineteenth century. This required the systematic study of a church as a
sociological body and the description of its various parts and their
inter-relation and interaction as in any other sociological body. Research on my
thesis gave me the first indications of
the distortions which the politics of Nationalism imposed on the writing of
Irish history. It is my aim in these books to remove these distortions and to
present a fair and complete picture.
Some broad conclusions can be
drawn from these studies. Ireland was not an oppressed, or occupied country.
Neither was it a colony. It was an equal partner in the United Kingdom just as
the individual states are equal partners in the United States. Seeking
independence from the United Kingdom was equivalent to an individual state
seeking independence from the United States. Ireland was not a backward
country, still less one whose economic growth was being retarded. The struggle
for independence was a struggle to gain control of the rackets, and it closely
resembled the contemporary struggle of Irish Catholics of Tammany Hall to
control the rackets.. The favourite weapon of the Irish Catholics was a brutal
terrorist campaign aimed chiefly at civilians and was no different from
present-day terrorist campaigns. In the early 20th century racist-fascist
ideology gripped Irish Catholics just as it did many people in Germany. Racist
fascism was an ideology which could never unite Irish people of all religions.
After Nine-Eleven and al Qaeda a scepticism has grown up with regard to self-claimed
freedom fighters who indulge in terrorist activities. It is now recognised that
Sinn Fein/IRA is one of the Far-Right parties that are re-appearing in
People want to learn the actual facts and not just get a
re-hash of old propagandas. Nobody nowadays would accept Nazi propaganda as
German history or Bolshevik propaganda as Russian history. Was Sinn Fein and
the IRA carrying out a genuine struggle for freedom from oppression, or just
carrying on a grubby campaign to control the rackets after the fashion of
Tammany Hall? Read and find out. Get all the facts.
Ireland was one of the leading
industrial countries in the world at the time. The greatest single achievement
of Ireland in the 19th and 20th centuries was the building of the mighty, but
ill-fated Titanic. The ship was not created in a vacuum but was the
product of numerous trades developed to the highest standards in the world. The
wireless which alerted the world to the tragedy had an intimate connection with
Ireland, for Marconi used Ireland as his base for attempting trans-Atlantic
communications. A few years after the flight of the Wright Brothers, Harry
Ferguson, who later was world-famous for his tractors, was building his own
plane. Ireland's participation in the First World War alongside Britain and the
United States is rarely given the treatment it deserves.
Far from being an
oppressed country, Ireland was one of the leading technological countries in the
world. The only reason therefore for the continuing political and terrorist
struggles was to control the rackets.
To re-interpret history it is necessary
to have a new point of view. Traditionally, the perspective for writing Irish
history was a racist one, based on a theory of races and race-struggles. The
classical example of this kind of history is Hitlerís Mein Kampf, and
this is now utterly discredited. Some attempts were made in the second half of
the twentieth century to use Marxism as an alternative framework. This too has
one consults a standard reference work like Wikipedia for articles on Ireland
one finds that they are totally imbued with the racist-fascist theories of Irish
nationalism. Propaganda is presented as fact. Data is selected to reflect one
viewpoint only, that of Irish nationalism. Any facts which do not fit this
framework are ignored. That there might be alternative viewpoints is never
indicated. To be fair, the contributors to Wikipedia may themselves never have
been taught anything but their own propaganda version of Irish history.
books are based on extensive research into the sources of Irish history with the
aim of providing as complete as possible account of Ireland's past and of all
the social, political, and religious groups who lived in Ireland. The very idea
of squeezing the whole of Irish history into a bi-lateral contest between the
good but oppressed Irish (represented by the Catholics and the wicked foreign
oppressors (the English and their Protestant allies) is abhorrent. I trust that
those who read these books will come to share my viewpoint.
Structure and Navigation
of this Site
of this site is a simple pyramidal one. At the top of this page, the Home
Page, there is a set of buttons of the six books which the site
contains. From every chapter in each book one can return directly to this
page. When one clicks on a book the Home Page of that book comes up.
Click on Contents and the individual chapters are brought up. Within each
book one can go from chapter to chapter of that book or return to the Home
Page of the Book or the Home Page of the site. Each chapter is divided into
section marked by hyperlinks. To return to the top of the page click on Top.
Alternatively, click on the icons of the individual books below to go
directly to that book. Clicking on the Topics below leads to the relevant
of Particular Interest
The Irish Government
The Irish Armed Forces
The Courts of Law
The Royal Irish Constabulary
Ireland and the First World War
The Great Famine I
The Great Famine II
The Catholic Association
The Veto and the Quarantotti Rescript
The Orange Order
Daniel O'Connell and Repeal
Home Rule and the Land League
IRA Terrorist Campaign 1919-1921
and Linen Manufacture
The Co-operative Movement
Transport and Communications
Education-The Kildare Place Society and the
Literary Theatre (Abbey Theatre)
Social Structure of
Church in the 6th Century
Reform in the 12th Century
Coming of the Normans
Ireland 1850-1920 which deals with the political history of the post-Famine period leading up to
This is the period about which most people have strong beliefs, but they are not
likely to get much support for their beliefs from this book. It provides a
radical new perspectives and completely blows away the nationalist republican
and loyalist propaganda versions of Irish history which have torn Ireland apart.
Many people will not like to see their favourite dreams shattered, but they will
be if they examine the evidence here presented.
Members of the Land League,
of the Home Rule Party, of the republican separatist movement, and the IRA do
not do well in this re-evaluation, while Protestants, especially those of the
Established Church do better. The 'Easter Rising' can only be compared with an
attempted Fascist putsch.
The Grail of Catholic Emancipation. The traditional story of how
Daniel O'Connell, aided by the Catholic
priests, broke the power of the
so-called 'Protestant Ascendancy' was very far from being the truth. But it was
the version put about by O'Connell and those priests who supported him for their
own purposes. One person indeed at the time said the Emancipation was achieved
despite O'Connell's efforts. Though this was an exaggeration it reflected the
enormous antagonism towards Catholics he engendered among many Protestants who
might have supported Emancipation. But that was only part of the story which was
played out against the background of the Napoleonic Wars and the struggle
between Napoleon and the Pope the effects of which reached as far as the
dioceses of Baltimore and New York in the United States.
Pre-Famine Ireland: Social Structure
deals with the
sociological and economic aspects of the period,. The material in the first book was broken down into central
and local government, the judicial system, the police, the economy under the
headings of agriculture, transport, industry, the financial system, and so on.
Also religion, education, health and medicine, and leisure and recreation.
It is not possible to understand political events unless one has a proper
knowledge of a lot of other factors, access to education, access to wealth,
access to justice, access to office, for example. Therefore it is necessary to
study these matters in detail.
Ireland 1800-1850 recounts the various political and other developments decade by decade.
with the political events. This period was usually not covered in detain by
nationalist historians, for apart from the Famine there was little in it that
was useful for their propaganda. For the first fifteen years that Ireland was
within the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland it was involved in the
greatest war of the nineteenth century, namely the Napoleonic War. It was the
ambition of Napoleon to attain the absolute domination of Europe and to control
all the other kings and emperors. He wished also to control the Pope who from
start to finish gave his support to the Protestant British kingdom. King George
III, unlike the heads of the various Catholic Powers, had no desire to control
the Pope. Ireland progressed well under the Union until the crisis of the Great
Famine. Irish nationalists always tried to place the blame for this on the
British Government, but a detailed examination shows that most of the fault lay
with various bodies and individuals within Ireland itself.
True Origins of Irish Society. The main
thrust of the investigation was to determine were there any grounds for the
traditional Irish nationalist belief that the Irish were a 'Celtic' people
conquered and kept in subjection for centuries by the 'Anglo-Saxons'. Little
grounds were found for sustaining that belief.
The history of the island of Ireland from its repopulation after the most recent
Ice Age until the Twelfth Century at which point the High Middle Ages were
deemed to have commenced. The author follows recent scholars in ditching
traditional accounts of the repopulation of Ireland through a series of
invasions and concludes that the population of Ireland is the same as that in
Western Europe. No evidence of an invasion of 'Celts' is found, and the
term 'Celtic' is reserved for the language only.
Ireland: Social Structure
continues the account of the development of
Ireland in the post-Famine period into a great industrial and agricultural
producer. The emphasis
in agriculture was now on the production of livestock
most of which was exported to Britain. This trade was facilitated by the
construction of roads and railway to every part of the island. Several
world-class manufacturing industries were developed the most famous of which
were linen and shipbuilding. In common with the rest of the United Kingdom
modernisation and development was pursued in every walk of life, in religion,
education, the structure of government, the courts, etc.
Quoting from these books
With regard to quotations
the usual conventions must be observed. Small passages may be quoted without
prior consent for purposes of illustration or criticism and the source of the
passages being acknowledged by including the author's name and the book and page
number from which the passages are quoted. Larger passages involving a paragraph
or more need my written consent.
A considerable part of the information was derived from contemporary newspapers
many of which were kept in the British National Library's newspaper collection
held at Colindale in north London U.K. Since leaving university I have been
involved in research and writing. The direction of my research was heavily
influenced by a book written early in the twentieth century by Adolf Hitler, namely
Kampf. This showed cleared how history should not be written, and how
historical truth can be distorted by propaganda. I was astonished to find how
the history of modern Germany presented in that book so closely resembled the
version of Irish history I was taught at school.
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by clicking on
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