This Great Calamity: The Irish Famine Analysis

958 Words 4 Pages
One of the most pressing issues occuring in Ireland during the mid 1840s to the early 1850s, was the Irish potato famine. There is some debate over whether the British were to blame for the mass emigration of the Irish, or that this emigration was bound to happen anyway. Many historians have established their positions on this issue, including Christine Kinealy and Hasia R. Diner. Kinealy, the author of This Great Calamity: The Irish Famine 1845-52, argues that the British are to blame for this mass emigration from Ireland. In contrast Hasia, the author of Where They Came From Erin’s Daughters in America: Irish Immigrant Women in the Nineteenth Century, explains that the British were in fact not to blame. After critically analyzing both sides, the better argued point is that the British were to blame for the mass emigration of the Irish people. In particular, the way Diner displays less background on the subject, as well as Kinealy having a more clear argument, and having a greater amount of evidence, are the three main reasons Kinealy argues her point in superior way. …show more content…
Kinealy argues the British policy during this time period must be examined to understand why so many people were forced to leave Ireland. Kinealy explains the famine was, “compounded by years of misrule and consolidated power by the inadequate response of the British government” (Kinealy, 49). In opposition, Diner argues, “immigration occurred both before and after the famine” (Mitchell and Mitchell, 47). Diner believed that the famine was not the main reason people left, it was to pursue better opportunity and

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