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This chapter offers a critical reading of Macbeth as a play preoccupied with war, including civil war and border warfare. Macbeth is arguably the greatest example of a character whose brutality is condemned so soon after being celebrated. There is an exploration of doublethink in a play that holds up savagery as heroism in its opening act in the shape of the severed head of a rebel and holds up the head of the executioner, a hero-turned-villain, in its closing scene. Working at the intersection of military history and medical humanities, this reading of the play tracks the effects and aftereffects of war and wounding, examines modern responses to the play by soldiers and psychiatrists that raise issues around care and control of veterans, addresses the politics of remembering and remembrance, and reflects on recent responses to Macbeth as a drama depicting the consequences of post–traumatic stress disorder.
This chapter examines the challenges that the second half of the war presented to the British monarchy’s sacralised status. It examines the impact of anti-monarchist revolution in 1916–22 in Ireland and in 1917–18 in Continental Europe upon the British monarchy and the way that courtiers reacted in response to such challenges and successfully re-sacralised the monarchy by associating it with ‘democracy’. It also examines the reasons why the monarchy’s German origins only became an issue relatively late in the war. Overall it finds very limited levels of wartime anti-monarchism in Britain, in contrast to the situation in Ireland.
Developing age-friendly communities is a significant global policy issue. The World Health Organization's (WHO) age-friendly cities and communities initiative significantly influenced the development of Ireland's Age-friendly Programme. This article critically examines the utilisation of the WHO age-friendly planning framework in the context of Ireland. It explores older adults’ experience of living in a county which is currently implementing an age-friendly programme, and uses this analysis to assess how the age-friendly programme addresses older residents’ needs, and to illustrate how the WHO conceptual and planning framework has worked in Ireland. The article reports on a qualitative case study which used constructivist grounded theory to explore the lived experience of older adults. The research identifies salient social and cultural dimensions of the day-to-day lived experience of older people which, although they impact on the age-friendliness of the places in which they live, are downplayed or neglected in the WHO framework. In critically analysing the transfer and relevance of the WHO age-friendly model in light of broader issues such as diversity of place, the dynamic nature of person–place relations, and the interplay between age-friendly policy and other age-related public policy, the article suggests ways in which the use of the WHO framework can be modified to accommodate better the diverse experience of older adults in Ireland, but also in other geographic and cultural contexts.
This is a ground-breaking history of the British monarchy in the First World War and of the social and cultural functions of monarchism in the British war effort. Heather Jones examines how the conflict changed British cultural attitudes to the monarchy, arguing that the conflict ultimately helped to consolidate the crown's sacralised status. She looks at how the monarchy engaged with war recruitment, bereavement, gender norms, as well as at its political and military powers and its relationship with Ireland and the empire. She considers the role that monarchism played in military culture and examines royal visits to the front, as well as the monarchy's role in home front morale and in interwar war commemoration. Her findings suggest that the rise of republicanism in wartime Britain has been overestimated and that war commemoration was central to the monarchy's revered interwar status up to the abdication crisis.
The 1999 publication of Pascale Casanova’s The World Republic of Letters (translation, 2004) accorded Ireland and Irish writers an unusually high profile among world literature studies. In chapter 10 of that volume, entitled “The Irish Paradigm,” Casanova foregrounded the achievement of the Irish Literary Revival as what she termed “a compact history of the revolt against the literary order.” This chapter examines the value and limitations of Casanova’s reading as part of a broader examination of the pertinence of terms such as “national,” “international” and “transnational” with respect to Irish writing. It focuses on three case studies: firstly, the historical relationship between Irish fiction and the subject of empire, as exemplified by the work of nineteenth-century novelist Maria Edgeworth. Secondly, it examines the work of W.B. Yeats, most famous writer of the Irish Revival, and his critical status as poet of decolonization and exemplar of transnational poetics. Finally, the transnational character of contemporary Irish fiction is discussed, including recent writings by writers Colm Tóibín, Anne Enright, Mike McCormack and Melatu Uche Okorie.
Decorated cists have been identified at three burial cairns in Kilmartin Glen, Mid Argyll. The paper provides a new analysis of the cover slab at Nether Largie North, which features a series of pecked axeheads. Previous studies suggested that they replaced an array of cup marks, but the evidence of photogrammetry suggests a longer sequence and a more complex scheme. The same approach was taken to the decorated cists beneath the Nether Largie Mid cairn and a comparable structure at Ri Cruin. Additional depictions were identified. The carvings within all three cists are organised in similar ways. They date from a period in the Early Bronze Age when metal was imported from Ireland. At the same time, the reuse of older structures suggests a new concern with the past.
The constitutional upheavals occasioned by Brexit can, at one level, be attributed to the way in which the EU referendum was conceived and conducted: the party political rather than constitutional motivation for the referendum; the relatively short and poor quality referendum campaign; the failure to take seriously the implications of a territorially divided result; the lack of planning for how withdrawal would be implemented; and the narrowness of the majority in favour of Leave. These weaknesses may have contributed to a significant absence of ‘losers’ consent’ amongst Remain voters, as well as a lack of realism about the choices and compromises that would need to be made in order to secure a withdrawal agreement. But these essentially procedural factors, important as they were, reflected and exacerbated much deeper tensions within the UK constitutional order. In this introductory chapter, we explore these deeper tensions, identifying four key sources of constitutional unease which have been exposed by Brexit: first, the UK’s fraught relationship with the European Union; second, strained territorial relations within the UK; third, Ireland’s complex relationship with the UK and the contested position of Northern Ireland; and, fourth, developing institutional tensions at the core of the UK constitution.
The United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union renders a united Ireland more likely than before. Unification, if it occurs, is likely to be accompanied by significant constitutional change or a new constitution. This chapter explores how the structure of governance could be adapted to make a newly unified state more sensitive to the concerns and aspirations of those from the Ulster Scots and Ulster British traditions. The chapter considers how consociational government for Northern Ireland could continue within a united Ireland, and assesses how a divergence of interests could lead to significant tensions between the national institutions and the devolved institutions, and within the national institutions themselves. The chapter identifies the many provisions of the current Irish constitution that posit a notion of Irish identity exclusionary of those from the Ulster Scots and Ulster British traditions. But their removal—at least without detailed consideration of how the constitution might be amended to respect multiple identities—risks reducing the sympathy of existing citizens for the unified State. The chapter concludes by exploring how the various constitutional changes considered would be interpreted and amendable after unification.
Brexit imposed a new binary on Northern Ireland politics which has interacted with the national question in complex ways. This interaction is the focus of this chapter. It begins by reviewing the position of the five main Northern Ireland parties on Europe prior to 2016. It explains the parties’ stances during the Brexit referendum campaign and examines how the parties responded to the referendum result. The chapter argues that Brexit produced constitutional restlessness in Northern Ireland because the vote lacked legitimacy according to the standards of consent contained in the 1998 Good Friday/Belfast Agreement. The chapter then traces how the new constitutional debate became established, highlighting how, although the debate was initiated by Brexit, it was intensified by subsequent developments in British and Irish politics. The chapter also explores key dilemmas that the debate posed for the political parties. The conclusion suggests that constitutional deliberations look set to continue but possibly at a lower intensity. Their direction will be shaped by developments in 2019-20 including the Boris Johnson Brexit agreement, the new Irish government, the restoration of devolution in Northern Ireland, and the coronavirus crisis.
In this paper, I reflect on two of my intertwined research interests. The first is my professional engagement with researching drug use and abuse in Ireland, especially heroin addiction, in applied ethnographic projects, generally answering a specific set of questions on how services for ‘drug addiction’ work. My second interest is the historical construction of ‘addiction’ and the discursive intersections that produce various kinds of power, subjects, and techniques around this concept. I find the dialectical relationship between heroin and methadone in Ireland, especially the emergence of heroin ‘injecting rooms’, as a window into how drugs are social things. Drugs and the bodies who take them live in complex moral worlds, not as inert objects surrounded by abstract human creations. These worlds are an integral part of how ‘addiction’ works and how drugs treating addiction are actually used. Without a deeper understanding of such complexities we will continue to miss key issues in the lives of people we hope to help.
The societies of medieval Northern Europe were slave-holding societies that revered military prowess and expressed wealth and power through symbols of warrior-hood. They were intensely hierarchical and patriarchal societies in which control, guardianship and naked power over people equated with status. Despite the growth of governmental and religious institutions, they remained societies obsessed with notions of honor and shame, with lineage and kinship, identity and belonging. This chapter explores some problematic historiographical assumptions around the diminishing significance of slavery in these cultural contexts, arguing that only when we acknowledge and recognize the slave-holding nature of these societies are we are better able to understand them. Close analysis of the lifestyle, attitudes, and cultural conceptions of the slave-holder and the enslaver are therefore essential. Indeed slave-holding behaviours are evident in a wide range of medieval sources including sagas, poetry, myths, chronicles, legal texts, manorial records, wills and manumissions as well as penitentials, sermons and hagiography. These sources reveal that enslaved people were regarded as the weakest, most dishonorable and degraded of all individuals. Paradoxically, they highlight that the marginalisation of enslaved human beings was extremely important for these communities - underpinning broader power relations and defining and reinforcing the boundaries of community identity and belonging.
The Republic of Ireland (ROI) currently reports the highest incidence rates of Shiga-toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC) enteritis and cryptosporidiosis in Europe, with the spatial distribution of both infections exhibiting a clear urban/rural divide. To date, no investigation of the role of socio-demographic profile on the incidence of either infection in the ROI has been undertaken. The current study employed bivariate analyses and Random Forest classification to identify associations between individual components of a national deprivation index and spatially aggregated cases of STEC enteritis and cryptosporidiosis. Classification accuracies ranged from 78.2% (STEC, urban) to 90.6% (cryptosporidiosis, rural). STEC incidence was (negatively) associated with a mean number of persons per room and percentage of local authority housing in both urban and rural areas, addition to lower levels of education in rural areas, while lower unemployment rates were associated with both infections, irrespective of settlement type. Lower levels of third-level education were associated with cryptosporidiosis in rural areas only. This study highlights settlement-specific disparities with respect to education, unemployment and household composition, associated with the incidence of enteric infection. Study findings may be employed for improved risk communication and surveillance to safeguard public health across socio-demographic profiles.
The turbulent 1830s saw a sequence of great political and social reforms in the United Kingdom. One such reform was the introduction of a locally funded Poor Law in Ireland. The development of a nascent welfare system in 1838 coincided with a boom in the formation of microfinance institutions in Ireland. The focus of this study is the expansion of a hybrid organizational form, Loan Fund Societies (LFSs), in the ten years prior to the Great Irish Famine of 1845–1849. LFSs were legally established with a conflictual structure: acting as commercially viable charitable institutions required to provide credit to the deserving poor (to enable them to be self-sufficient) while dedicating their “profits” to supporting the indigent poor. This study uses an analytical framework drawing inspiration from institutional logics to explore and better understand Irish microfinance in the early nineteenth century, a period of profound socioeconomic and socioreligious changes. It seeks to explain the factors that motivated the establishment and de-establishment of microfinance institutions amid this tumult. Legislative changes in LFS business parameters in 1843 made the tensions between being charitable and commercially sustainable salient; and, for some, it made continued existence untenable.
Frederick Douglass was perhaps the most successful African American abolitionist to traverse the Atlantic and tour the British Isles. In town halls, churches, taverns, and private parlor rooms across the country he spoke to hundreds of thousands of people, sparking a wave of transatlantic abolition that had a deep impact on the British landscape. While he only traveled to Britain and Ireland three times, the friendships and networks he created, together with his transformative experiences there, shaped, supported and sustained his public antislavery work in the United States for the rest of his life.
The aim of the present study was to evaluate the levels of possible internet addiction, gaming addiction, gambling addiction and associated mental health difficulties in a secondary school population in Ireland.
An online survey containing questions related to internet addiction, gaming addiction, gambling addiction and associated mental health difficulties was administered to secondary school adolescents in Ireland. Participants were self-selecting and answered questions on the characteristics of each topic and screening questionnaires for addiction to each behaviour, as well as their respective effects on mental health.
A total of 234 children participated in the survey (156 males; aged 12–18 years; average age of 14.2 years; S.D. 1.60). Internet addiction as assessed using the Chen Internet Addiction Scale was present for between 11.5% and 22.6% and levels of gaming addiction as assessed using by the Internet Gaming Disorder Scale–Short Form was present for between 0.5% and 1.6%. Weak positive correlations were found between time spent on the internet and time spent gaming with internet addiction and gaming addiction, respectively. There were weak positive correlations between higher internet addiction scores, higher gaming addiction scores, and increased depression and anxiety scores. Using the South Oaks Gambling Screen–Revised for Adolescents, two participants were classed as ‘at-risk’ for gambling addiction and one participant was classed as a problem gambler.
The present study examined behavioural addictions and their effects on mental health on a self-selecting sample of schoolchildren at two schools in Ireland. A low number were identified as being at risk or problem gamblers.
Arguments for reform of the dynamic of medical negligence litigation in Ireland frequently centre on temporal and financial concerns. However, as the field of law and psychology has continued to grow, a body of international literature has emerged which recognises that litigation can have a destructive emotional impact on its participants, particularly in the context of medical negligence disputes.
This paper contributes to the discourse on law-caused harms through a critical exploration of the emotional burdens of medical negligence litigation from the perspective of both the plaintiff and medical practitioner, with reference to the findings of an empirical study (interviews with barristers, patient support groups, and medical professional bodies) and the literature. Whilst the temporal and financial efficiency of medical negligence litigation is important, if litigation can cause emotional harm, this should be considered a serious, undesirable effect of the traditional adversarial process, and may have broader implications for reform in this area.
The TPNW was welcomed at the UN General Assembly, under the participation of a wide range of humanitarian groups and civil society organizations, supported by a groundswell of nations around the world. The Treaty firmly implants new law into the international legal landscape for states who wish to ratify it, sowing the seeds of potentially new normative behavior within the global community more generally. Indeed, the TPNW purports to strive for universality, raising significant questions regarding its ambitions in achieving legal unity within the wider international legal order. The dedication to the spirit of the Treaty cannot be ignored, nor can the optimism to ban nuclear weapons.
In Ireland, where the struggle for independence has transformed generations of former gunmen into established statesmen, political violence offers a less contentious term than terrorism for analysing how non-state actors used force to bring about political change. Conveying how violence was conceived ‘as a form of politics, a bargaining tool in the negotiation process between state and opposition’, it offers a useful (if more diffuse) category to analyse the political impact of violence. Given that ‘terrorists don’t just do terrorism’, there is a strong case for analysing terroristic forms of violence alongside other strands of political and armed struggle which it supplemented or displaced. This chapter will argue that the significance of political violence in Ireland stemmed primarily from its impact on non-violent nationalism and the state, and that the forms of violence adopted by republicans shaped that dynamic relationship in important ways.
In Ireland, the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has led to a total of 230,599 cases of infection as on 20 March 2021, and 4323 deaths. Although the Irish hospital network has not been overwhelmed, it has faced pressures, with a total of 13,313 persons hospitalised, including 1402 admitted to the intensive care unit. Out of caution, in spring 2020, in anticipation of possible surges in hospitals in light of international experience, the Irish government reached an agreement with private hospitals to access their capacity for three months to alleviate pressure on the public system, as part of its comprehensive response to the pandemic. This piece analyses the agreement with private hospitals, based on the legally binding Heads of Terms of the agreement, which were signed by the parties, along with publicly reported details from media reports and Oireachtas (parliamentary) committee hearings. We argue that although the new relationship could, in theory, have paved the way to the nationalisation of the whole hospital system, in fact, the experiment is best interpreted as a lost opportunity to integrate and simplify Ireland's hospital system.
Michael Walling here looks back over the first twenty-five years of Border Crossings, the company he founded in 1995. The article explores the company’s intercultural remit, placing it within the wider context of multicultural and intercultural performance and policy, and the relationship between intercultural theory and practice. Structural questions around finance and organization are juxtaposed with an assessment of the dynamics of cross-cultural devising and the ethics of these collaborations. This article also explores Border Crossings’ text-based work, its curation of the ORIGINS Festival of First Nations and related ceremonies, and the company’s direct engagement with policy in the European Union. It is accompanied by a comprehensive chronology of the company’s productions. Michael Walling is Artistic Director of Border Crossings and Visiting Professor at Rose Bruford College. He has directed numerous productions across four continents, including opera as well as theatre.