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Recalling the Celtic Tiger

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Edited By Eamon Maher, Eugene O'Brien and Brian Lucey

This book looks at various effects, symptoms and consequences of the period in Irish culture known as the Celtic Tiger. It will trace the critical pathway from boom to bust – and up to the current beginnings of a similar, smaller boom – through events, personalities and products. The short entries offer a sense of the lived experience of this seismic period in contemporary Irish society.

While clearly not all aspects of the period could realistically be covered, the book does contain essential information about the central actors, events, themes, and economic trends, which are discussed in a readable and accessible manner. Each entry is linked to the overall Celtic Tiger phenomenon and its immediate aftermath.

The book also provides a comprehensive account of what happened in this period and will be a factual resource for anyone anxious to discover information on the areas most commonly connected to it. All entries are written by experts in the area. The contributors include broadcasters, economists, cultural theorists, sociologists, literary critics, journalists, politicians and writers, each of whom brings particular insights to some aspect of the Celtic Tiger.

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PIIGS Countries (Shaen Corbet)

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Shaen Corbet

PIIGS Countries

PIIGS is an acronym for five of the most economically weak Eurozone nations during the European debt crisis, namely Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain. The group were mostly known for their weakened economic output and financial instability, which heightened doubts about the nations’ abilities to pay back bondholders and generated substantial fear that any of the countries could default on their debts. The term itself appears to have been modified by the Financial Times throughout 2009 and 2010 through the addition of a second ‘I’ to the term PIGS.

The term originated in the 1970s and 1980s with the increased integration of the EU economies, and it was often used in reference to the growing debt and economic vulnerability of the southern European countries, all of which are peripheral to both Germany and France. The addition of a second ‘I’ represented the addition of Ireland to the group, as the Celtic Tiger economy began to collapse and the probability of a bailout increased. Although Ireland would have been widely considered as a peripheral, economically problematic country throughout the 1970s and 1980s, the Celtic Tiger era elevated perceptions of the country’s economic prowess. Since the establishment of the euro as their currency, this group have been unable to employ independent monetary policy to help counteract the widespread damage caused by the financial crisis in 2008.

The economic troubles of the PIIGS nations reignited debate about the efficacy of...

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