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This book examines Irish Poor Law reform during the years of the Irish revolution and Irish Free State. This work is a significant addition to the growing historiography of the twentieth century which moves beyond political history, and demonstrates that concepts of respectability, social class and gender are central dynamics in Irish society. This book provides the first major study of local welfare practices and exploration of policies, attitudes and the poor. This monograph examines local public assistance regimes, institutional and child welfare, and hospital care. It charts the transformation of workhouses into a network of local authority welfare and healthcare institutions including county homes, county hospitals, and mother and baby homes. The book's exploration of welfare and healthcare during revolutionary and independent Ireland provides fresh and original insights into this critical juncture in Irish history. The book will appeal to Irish historians and those with interests in welfare, the Poor Law and the social history of medicine and institutions. -- .
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Table of Contents

Introduction 1. The poor law and the Irish revolution: the case of the Cork workhouse 2. From outdoor relief to home assistance: workhouses to work tests 3. Single mothers and institutionalisation 4. Child welfare and local authorities: institutions v boarding-out 5. The end of the poor law taint?: from workhouses to hospitals Conclusion Bibliography Index -- .

About the Author

Donnacha Sean Lucey is a Research Fellow in the School of History and Anthropology at Queen's University Belfast -- .


'This work is thoroughly researched, immaculately presented and thoughtfully written and provides an important contribution to the historiography of revolutionary and independent Ireland. Lucey's ground-level analysis reveals how national policies were interpreted in local contexts, revealing a multitude of social, economic, religious and cultural dynamics that underpinned poor law and welfare reform in Ireland in the early twentieth century.' Stephen Bance, University College Dublin, Irish Economic and Social History 2016, Vol 43 (1) -- .

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