Sport has played a central role in modern Ireland’s history. Perhaps nowhere else has sport so infused the political, social and cultural development and identity of a nation. During this so-called ‘Decade of Centenaries’ in Ireland (2014 to 2024) recently there has been an exponential growth in interest and academic research on Ireland’s sporting heritage. This collection of chapters, contributed by some of Ireland’s most preeminent sport and social historians, showcases the richness and complexity of Ireland’s sporting legacy. Articles on topics as diverse as the role of native Gaelic games in emphasising the emerging cultural nationalism of pre-Revolutionary Ireland, the contribution of Irish rugby to the broader British war effort in World War 1, the emergence of Irish soccer on the international stage, and the long running battle to gain official recognition within international athletics for an independent Irish state, are presented. This work’s intention is to illustrate some of the latest and most vibrant research being conducted on Irish sports history.
This book was published as a special issue of Sport in Society.
1. Introduction 2. ‘Contesting the Fields of Play: The Gaelic Athletic Association and the Battle for Popular Sport in Ireland, 1890-1906’ 3. The GAA and Revolutionary Irish Politics in Late 19th and Early 20th Century Ireland 4. ‘Irish Rugby and the First World War’ 5. ‘The National Athletic Association of Ireland and Irish Athletics, 1922-1937: Steps on the Road to Athletic Isolation’ 6. ‘The Emergence of Hurling in Australia 1877-1917’ 7. ‘Irish born players in England’s Football Leagues, 1945-2010: An Historical and Geographical Assessment’ 8. ‘The Cork Sportsman: A Provincial Sporting Newspaper, 1908-1911’ 9. ‘Ireland – Soccer Champions of the World’ 10. ‘Hardy Fingallians, Kildare Trippers and ‘The Divil Ye’ll Rise’ Scufflers: Wrestling in Modern Ireland’
The social, cultural (including media) and political study of sport is an expanding area of scholarship and related research. While this area has been well served by the Sport in the Global Society series, the surge in quality scholarship over the last few years has necessitated the creation of Sport in the Global Society: Contemporary Perspectives. The series will publish the work of leading scholars in fields as diverse as sociology, cultural studies, media studies, gender studies, cultural geography and history, political science and political economy. If the social and cultural study of sport is to receive the scholarly attention and readership it warrants, a cross-disciplinary series dedicated to taking sport beyond the narrow confines of physical education and sport science academic domains is necessary. Sport in the Global Society: Contemporary Perspectives will answer this need.