• The Famine Plot

  • England's Role in Ireland's Greatest Tragedy
  • By: Tim Pat Coogan
  • Narrated by: Roger Clark
  • Length: 11 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History, Europe
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (79 ratings)
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Publisher's Summary

During a Biblical seven years in the middle of the 19th century, Ireland experienced the worst disaster a nation could suffer. Fully a quarter of its citizens either perished from starvation or emigrated in what came to be known as Gorta Mor, the Great Hunger. Waves of hungry peasants fled across the Atlantic to the United States, with so many dying en route that it was said "you could walk dry shod to America on their bodies".

In this sweeping history, Ireland's best-known historian, Tim Pat Coogan, tackles the dark history of the Irish Famine and argues that it constituted one of the first acts of genocide. In what the Boston Globe calls "his greatest achievement", Coogan shows how the British government hid behind the smoke screen of laissez faire economics, the invocation of divine providence, and a carefully orchestrated publicity campaign, allowing more than a million people to die agonizing deaths and driving a further million into emigration.

Unflinching in depicting the evidence, Coogan presents a vivid and horrifying picture of a catastrophe that shook the 19th century and finally calls to account those responsible.

©2012 Tim Pat Coogan (P)2017 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Many intriguing points [are] made in this book...the minutes spark and sputter with a deep, lingering, well-cherished rage." (Peter Behrens, The Washington Post)

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Atrocities abound.

The crimes against the Irish with levels of wanton apathy rarely seen throughout recorded history, makes this book a necessary yet bitter pill. I had to pause reading/listening to the audio version two times to take a day or so to gather myself.

Those that are interested in Irish roots, or general Irish history should delve deeper for a better understanding.

10 people found this helpful

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Old Wounds reopened

the offer meticulously and accurately describes the callous nature and abandonment of Ireland to Minds using capitalism as a Prelude an excuse for genocide in the English wig Parliament.

4 people found this helpful

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Essential Tool for Understanding the Great Famine

This book is an essential tool for understanding the Great Famine. It goes into great detail without being tedious. Some of the appendices were a little more information than I wanted, but overall this is an amazing work. Highly recommended.

3 people found this helpful

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Amazing book...

Well worth listening to, perhaps thrice. The plight and pity of Ireland's people is horrendous from the sounds of things. It's no womder that when they came to America and had to compete against the enslaves African, they showed signs of hatred and bias. Hurt people, hurt people. All in all, this book was amazing. So much history to take in. Phenomenal reading.

2 people found this helpful

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Overview

This book a much better read...I would recommend it as a filler
to those who need or want a sharper blade to dig deeper into the famine. It cuts deeper with knowledge about people and life before and after the famine. It alerts the reader to the good, the bad, and failure of faith, society and government to help a poor people. People who could help themselves but were held back because of their faith and education.

2 people found this helpful

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Great voice and story

I love the voice! And I enjoyed the book- I have been reading many books on this subject and I learned a lot from this one in particular. Worth the time to listen and the $$$$

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Factually detailed but a story not well told

There is a lot of detailed information in this book. However, the first few chapters are written ( or perhaps narrated) with such venom against the English oppressors that exacerbated the effects of the blight that it detracts somewhat from the information imparted. Putting this aside, there is a wealth of (seemingly) well researched information that anyone wanting to learn about the late 19th century famine in Ireland, its causes and its global impact will discover nuggets of knowledge. I rate this book highly for the learning opportunity it provides as someone wanting to learn about their ancestry, but the writing style and narrator are distracting in their delivery style in the early parts of the book. I will undoubtedly listen to this book again as I piece together my history and become more familiar with the protagonists of the subjugation of Ireland in the late 1800s.