Why Study Ireland

Irish Studies developed from an offshore scion of English literature to its current position as a burgeoning field not only in Anglo-America but also in Eastern Europe, Asia and the former Soviet Union. It has grown from the study of great men of Irish literature and history into an investigation of a (disputed) territory and a (diasporic) people.

In 2005, the Economist declared Ireland the best place to live in the world in terms of growth, per capita income and future prospects. A decade later, the story of Ireland's incredible economic boom (the Celtic tiger) and subsequent financial crash dominates the headlines. Now the roar of the Celtic tiger has receded and Ireland is once again a struggling economy in the European Union.

As the world watches to see if Ireland can perform another economic miracle, issues such as immigration and globalization have transformed the island and its inhabitants. Irish Studies too has changed to accommodate a version of Ireland that does not always conform to the vision of itself that has prevailed over the last 50 years. Irish Studies remains a dynamic, interdisciplinary field of study attracting some of the best students and scholars across the globe.