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Posted 09 September 2009

People, Politics and Power – Irish History from 1660-1850

In honour of James I. McGuire’s contribution to the historiography of Ireland, some of the most recent thinking on politics and society in Ireland from the Restoration to the Great Famine (1660-1850) is presented in a new volume: People, Politics, and Power – Essays on Irish History 1660-1850.

Written by former students and colleagues, each of the themes and issues addressed in the collection owes its origin in some way to an interest or experience stimulated by the author’s intellectual relationship with McGuire.

The book provides a new perspective on the various processes and influences that help to define people and their actions in Irish history between 1660 and 1850.

Until his retirement, James I. McGuire had lectured in history at University College Dublin for over thirty years. From 1987 to 1992, he was joint editor of Ireland’s leading history journal, Irish Historical Studies. As chairman of the Irish Manuscripts Commission he oversaw a major revival in published output and electronic resources. He has also written and edited a series of seminal articles and collections in the field of Irish historiography.

Currently, McGuire is the managing editor of the forthcoming nine-volume Dictionary of Irish Biography, a chronicle of the lives and deeds of almost 10,000 figures in Irish history.

“James’s huge contribution to the wider world of Irish historical scholarship is exemplified by his service to the Irish Historical Society and its flagship journal, Irish Historical Studies,” says Dr Art Cosgrove, former President of UCD, who contributed a personal memoir to the new book.

“He acted as secretary to the society from 1976 to 1981; was joint editor of the journal from 1987 to 1992; and his election as president of the society in 1994 was a deserved recognition of his efforts on its behalf.”

People, Politics and Power – Essays on Irish History 1660-1850 in Honour of James I. McGuire is edited by Dr John McCafferty, UCD School of History and Archives, and Director of the UCD Miceal O’Cleirigh Institute; Dr Charles Ivar McGrath, UCD School of History and Archives; and Dr James Kelly, Head of the Department of History at St Patrick’s College Drumcondra.

According to the publisher, UCD Press, all copies of the book were sold at the official launch on Friday 04 September 2009. "This is something which has never happened before and is a testament to the high regard for James I. McGuire and his work," a UCD Press spokesperson said.

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People, Politics and Power – Irish History from 1660-1850