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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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Women and the Church (Sharon Tighe-Mooney)

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Sharon Tighe-Mooney

Women and the Church

The economic rise of the Celtic Tiger was preceded by the cultural fall of the Catholic Church with the revelation, in 1992, about the popular bishop Eamon Casey fathering a son. This was followed swiftly by the exposure of the fathering of two children by the singing priest, Michael Cleary. These seismic cultural shocks were soon engulfed by the recounting, in 1994, of the decades of abuse perpetrated by the Norbertine priest, Brendan Smyth in the UTV documentary, Suffer the Children. This was followed by the detailing of the sustained abuse suffered by children in Irish Church-run industrial and reformatory schools over a 50-year period in Mary Raftery’s States of Fear, broadcast by RTÉ in 1999. To this dismal list was added the details of the punitive lives of women incarcerated in Magdalene Laundries, the high death rates of their children and more recently, although first reported to the Vatican by Sr Maura O’Donoghue in 1994, the widespread abuse of nuns and vulnerable women by priests on every continent.

While much has been written about the crisis in the visible cultural fabric of Irish society, the role of women, as the former unofficial propagators of the faith, and the consequences for the faith of the renouncing of that role, has been less well documented. Catholic Church thinking has long divided the world into private and public spheres, with decision making, leadership, business and the worldly affairs of the...

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