Strangers to that Land, subtitled ‘British Perceptions of Ireland from the Reformation to the Famine’, is a critical anthology of English, Scottish and Welsh colonists’ and travellers’ accounts of Ireland and the Irish from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries.
It consists exclusively of eyewitness descriptions of Ireland given by writers using the English language who had never been to Ireland before and were seeing the country for the first time. Each extract, where necessary, is set in context and briefly explained. The result is a vivid, continuous record of Ireland as defined and judged by the British over a period of four centuries.
In their general introduction the editors discuss the significance of these changing historical perceptions, as well as the impact upon them of literary conventions which played a part in shaping the emerging texts. It is argued that the relationship between Ireland and England within a British context constitutes a unique case study in the procedures of racial stereotyping and colonial representation, the exploration of cultural conflict and the aesthetics of travel writing.
There are twenty-one contemporary illustrations in this, the fifth volume in the Ulster Editions and Monographs series.
Andrew Hadfield is lecturer in Medieval and Renaissance Literature at the University of Wales, and John McVeagh is Senior Lecturer in English at the University of Ulster at Coleraine.ISBN 0-86140350-9 xii, 316pp, 21 illus. £27.50 net More info →