The Irish immigrants were (self-evidently) not A. How the Irish Became White. Noel Ignatiev, Author, Ignatiev Noel, Author Routledge $55 (p) ISBN. “How the Irish Became White”. by Noel Ignatiev. Routledge. “It is a curious fact,” wrote John Finch, an English Owenite who traveled the. The relevant scholarly literature seems to have started with Noel Ignatiev’s book “ How the Irish Became White,” and taken off from there.

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However, his work makes this book indispensable as a researcher’s platform for further historical analysis on the subject.

Choice Review Ignatiev shows the force of antislavery attitudes in Ireland and demonstrates how Irish immigrants to antebellum America were originally identified with free blacks because of similar conditions, cooperative efforts to deal with poverty, and predictions of Irish and black “amalgamation. Ignatiev makes a strong case that Irish immigrants were willing to work extremely hard in order to pull themselves out of their severe poverty.

What I found interesting, and believe Ignatiev did a good job portraying, is that the race riots were actually in response to the economic condition of US capitalism. Yet they came to America and began to do the same thing to African Americans that were being done to them by the English. I hold that if you want to read a book about modern America, you would be advised to read not one of the silly political tracts on the NYT bestseller list, but rather, this book focusing on the history of Irish American immigration, most particularly in Philadelphia in the years preceding the Civil War.

Generally speaking, the mistreatment of the Irish in the US is exaggerated and misrepresented. This is all speculation Africa is slot bigger, alot more room to hide, jungles, other non slave tribes and what not. Ignatiev believes that these and other pressures convinced the Irish that being “white” was most important to success in America.

Ignatiev is heavy on the well-researched facts of Irish political maneuvering in the US and Ireland and perhaps a bit light on the overall arguments.

May 16, at 1: Instead it is a collection of essays mostly unrelated to each other and only vaguely related to the topic. But once they finally emigrated to the United States, something unexpected happened; they were faced with a new How the Irish Became White provides a glimpse at the social evolution of the Irish in the years surrounding the Civil War, as they transitioned from an oppressed and unwelcome social class, to members of becme white racial class.

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Then the best bit of writing comes two paragraphs after it, comparing the literature left from the period by both Irish and African Americans: Noel Ignatiev is an American history professor who earned his Ph.

How the Irish Became White

Oct 19, Ed rated it liked it. This book could still be better but he’s definitely igish the murderous psychopath that so many are accusing him of being. If you are Irish and want to feel even worse about yourself, or if you just plain don’t like white people, I highly recommend this book.

Imagine that you’re fucked. What hit me most was the fact that despite centuries of supposed evolution, many things just haven’t changed. He is co-editor with John Garvey of Race Traitor, an abolitionist magazine. Just read the book and share the knowledge. The Irish corpes were thrown overboard and fed to the sharks that would follow these ships waiting for their feeding.

Lets hope that we can learn something from books like these and do better moving forward. We have a similar situation with the Gaza Strip today. The following ho were successfully added. Enter your email address and subscribe to get the latest End of Capitalism news right in your inbox. The book will go noe, way towards connecting Irish-Americans with their histories of resistance, and increase awareness of the choices that were made to sever solidarity.

How the Irish became white

It also does a good job discussing the developing whiteness of the Irish in the context of inter-class conflict and intra-class conflict over limited employment.

Northern industrial labor markets were saturated by waves of immigrants and freed slaves competing over lower and lower wages.

He uncovers the roots of conflict between Irish-Americans and African-Americans and draws a powerful connection between the embracing of white supremacy and Irish “success” in 19th century American society. Fields’ commentary on the term, saying that racism “has been devalued to hoq little more than a personal preference for one complexion over another.

No people should take pride in their rise, if they have kept their boot on the neck of another people to keep them down. Ignatiev examines one nation, and the history of one One of the best works of history on th in America ever written. The Irish are a complicated ignatoev. One is that the Irish in America were pro-slavery both for economic reasons–in the north they were one precarious, slippery step above free black labor on the class ladder and had significant economic reasons nole fear black workers replacing them, a fear exploited by employers.


The development of different racial attitudes and identities between the Irish and Irish Americans is sad. Grant, Sheridan, Meade, Reynolds, and Sherman adoption and marriage.

Review of “How the Irish Became White”

Sep 15, Alex rated it really liked it Shelves: By his uncle whike he was learning his trade in Boston. Bring on the next family gathering. How was it, Ignatiev asks, that they assimilated into the nation?

The extreme violence and corruption shocked me at first, but in fact explains quite a lot about the current reality of Philadelphia, which remains racially tense and divided to this day. Dec 26, Art rated it liked it Shelves: To overcome the racial barriers of today and tomorrow, we need to learn from the mistakes of the past. So very good, but a bit scattered, and it reads almost like a preliminary sketch of a greater work. Feb 06, Gina rated it did not like it.

Nativism was predominantly anti-Catholic. Immigration, Capitalism and the Historic Moment in Arizona 5. The price on their heads was about 5 pounds sterling while the African slave was worth about 50 pounds. Irish-Americans formed themselves into private “fire companies” who were basically gangs who competed with other fire companies by setting fires in their territory, then attacking the firemen. It’s not so much about how Irish immigrants changed their ethnicity but rather how they learned about the Apparently it was LBJ and not Malcolm X like I assumed for some reason who said “If you can convince the lowest white man he’s better than the best colored man, he won’t notice you’re picking his pocket.

Summary Ignatiev traces the tattered history of Irish and African-American relations, revealing how the Irish used labor unions, the Catholic Church and the Democratic party to succeed in American.

Sep 09, Trevor rated it liked it Shelves: