Date(s) - 08/11/2017
8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Lackagh Parish Centre


Ways from the West: Migration, Depopulation and the West of Ireland in the post-Famine era

Dr Jennifer Redmond, Lecturer in Twentieth Century Irish History in the Department of History at Maynooth University, will speak at our November meeting on 8 November at 8pm in Lackagh Parish Centre.


We have all been deeply affected by the migrant flows – they have cut across all classes and counties in Ireland, although the working class and rural peasantry were the ones most affected in the nineteenth and into the twentieth century. The West has had the greatest devastation in the period after the Famine, experiencing both internal and external flights from the land. While the population had expanded rapidly before the Famine, the combination of low marriage rates, high celibacy and high emigration combined to create a world in which between 1 in 5 and 1 in 3 people had disappeared from the West after it. Ireland spawned a global family, families became what we call transnational – having people in different parts of the world, so that now there are about 10 times more people claiming Irish descent than currently live in Ireland. In this talk I will explore stories and sources for studying the depopulation of the West, looking in particular at some relatively unknown sources from the Second World War. This takes the narrative from the more familiar tale of journeys to America to look at the vital contribution of the Irish to the British home front and beyond.

About the Speaker

Dr Redmond is Lecturer in Twentieth Century Irish History and Director of the MA in Irish History at the Department of History in Maynooth University. She completed her undergraduate degree at University College Dublin and an M.Phil and PhD at the School of Histories and Humanities at Trinity College Dublin, the latter on the discourses surrounding Irish female migration to Britain during the first decades of Irish independence. Her research interests include migration from twentieth century Ireland, particularly during the Second World War, Irish women’s history, Irish social history and digital humanities. She was the President of the Women’s History Association of Ireland (2014-2017).

All are welcome to this public lecture, which is free of charge. The WFHA Library will be open to members from 7:30pm.

November 2017 Meeting – Dr Jennifer Redmond, Maynooth University