The Famine Plot

England's Role in Ireland's Greatest Tragedy

Tim Pat Coogan

Palgrave Macmillan Trade

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During a Biblical seven years in the middle of the nineteenth century, fully a quarter of Ireland’s citizens either perished from starvation or emigrated in what came to be known as Gorta Mór, the Great Hunger. Waves of hungry peasants fled across the Atlantic to the United States, with so many dying en route that it was said, "you could walk dry shod to America on their bodies." In this sweeping history Ireland’s best-known historian, Tim Pat Coogan, tackles the dark history of the Irish Famine and argues that it constituted one of the first acts of genocide. In what The Boston Globe calls "his greatest achievement," Coogan shows how the British government hid behind the smoke screen of laissez faire economics, the invocation of Divine Providence and a carefully orchestrated publicity campaign, allowing more than a million people to die agonizing deaths and driving a further million into emigration. Unflinching in depicting the evidence, Coogan presents a vivid and horrifying picture of a catastrophe that that shook the nineteenth century and finally calls to account those responsible.

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Reviews

Praise for The Famine Plot

“Many intriguing points [are] made in this book…Coogan’s pages spark and sputter with a deep, lingering, well-cherished rage.”--Peter Behrens, The Washington Post

 

“To many, Mr. Coogan… [is the] voice of modern Irish history… makes a compelling case for why we should revisit our current understanding of [the famine].” –The Economist

 

“Coogan’s insistent examining of the moral dimensions of that nation’s policies, and how they fueled the horrors on the ground, represents his greatest contribution to the voluminous scholarship on the Irish famine, and is this book’s greatest strength.”—The Boston Globe

 

“In disturbingly graphic images and compelling language based on true stories from the Famine archives and peppered with his own perspective, Coogan captures the utter devastation wrought by Ireland’s greatest ecological disaster which reduced the population by one fourth.”—Irish Edition

 

“The best part is that it did such a good job at keeping me interested that I'm eager to read on and learn more.”—Fingers and Prose

"Coogan makes no bones about accusing the government of the day of "a genocidal intent" ... His writing on Ireland's past is intelligent and accessible to a large readership." -- BBC History Magazine  


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About the Author

Tim Pat Coogan

Tim Pat Coogan is Ireland's best known historian and the author of numerous important works on Irish history, including Michael Collins and The IRA, published to wide acclaim. The former editor of The Irish Press, he lives in Dublin, Ireland.

Tim Pat Coogan

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Available Formats and Book Details

The Famine Plot
England's Role in Ireland's Greatest Tragedy
Tim Pat Coogan

Trade Paperback

Trade Paperback
St. Martin's Press
Palgrave Macmillan Trade
September 2013
Trade Paperback
ISBN: 9781137278838
ISBN10: 1137278838
6 x 9.25 inches, 304 pages, Includes one 8-page black-and-white photograph insert
$17.00

Hardcover

Hardcover
St. Martin's Press
Palgrave Macmillan Trade
November 2012
Hardcover
ISBN: 9780230109520
ISBN10: 0230109527
6 1/8 x 9 1/4 inches, 288 pages, Plus one 8-page black-and-white photograph insert
$28.00

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
St. Martin's Press
Palgrave Macmillan Trade
November 2012
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781137045171
ISBN10: 1137045175
288 pages, 8 page insert
$9.99
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