Death and the Irish: A Miscellany, by Salvador Ryan (Editor)
An exploration of the relationship Irish people have with death from the earliest times to the present day. In over seventy articles, it gathers together the expertise of historians, archaeologists, folklorists, sociologists, geographers, Celtic Studies scholars, dramatists, anthropologists, musicologists, theologians, liturgists, undertakers, and palliative care specialists, in a wide-ranging and lavishly-illustrated collection, which is, at times, as humorous as it is poignant.
"Surprise and delight and chills are to be found at every turn of the page. The Famine is here, and so are state funerals; so are the condemned men of 1916 waiting for their quietus in Kilmainham. Not many books illuminate something that most of us prefer to keep at arm’s length so well, so quietly and so generously. Even if death scares you beyond all measure, there’s no need to be scared by this book. In fact, the only thing that might really scare you is the degree to which you’ll enjoy it." - History Ireland review.
"The Irish may not necessarily “do” death better than anyone else, but as this volume makes clear, the history and rituals surrounding death offer a rich and complex area of study, one that has much to tell us about Irish attitudes towards mortality and treatment of the dead." - Irish Times review.