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Irish, Catholic and Scouse highlights the complex interplay of cultural and structural factors experienced by the most significant ethnic group in nineteenth- and early twentieth-century pre-multicultural Britain: the Irish in Liverpool. Drawing upon new approaches to our understanding of diasporas, this study emphasises the role of ethnic agency as Catholic migrants and their descendants made Irishness their own. Belchem looks in detail at those who remained in Liverpool, the hub of the Irish diaspora, and contrasts them with their compatriots who continued on their trans-national travels. This path-breaking study will be required reading for those who wish to understand the Irish diaspora and the cultural melting pot of nineteenth-century Liverpool.
John Belchem is Emeritus Professor of History at the University of Liverpool, author of Irish, Catholic and Scouse: The History of the Liverpool-Irish, 1800-1940 (LUP, 2007) and editor of Liverpool 800: Character, Culture, History (LUP, 2006).