The Tombs of a Departed Race: Illustrations of Ireland's Great Hunger

The Tombs of a Departed Race: Illustrations of Ireland's Great Hunger

by Niamh O'Sullivan


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The subject matter of real human suffering does not lend itself easily to art. Ireland's Great Hunger — the worst demographic catastrophe of the nineteenth century – coincided with the invention of new mass-market periodicals. Niamh O'Sullivan considers the aesthetic, historical, technical and contextual roles of British newspaper illustration in interpreting the story of the Famine. The booklet examines how academically trained artists who had little experience of looking at unfiltered or distanced atrocity became pictorial journalists and found new ways to image a trauma of unprecedented scale and horror.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780990468639
Publisher: Cork University Press
Publication date: 04/30/2015
Series: Famine Folios Series
Pages: 68
Product dimensions: 8.80(w) x 10.70(h) x 0.20(d)

About the Author

Niamh O’Sullivan is Professor Emerita of Visual Culture (National College of Art and Design) and Curator of Ireland's Great Hunger Museum, Quinnipiac University.

Table of Contents

Horrible Suffering, Utter Penury
Crawling Skeletons
Half-Clad Spectres
The Mirror of Truth
A Mass of Human Putrefaction
The Triumph of Pestilence and the Feast of Death
The Black Hole of Calcutta
Buried in the Deep
Works Cited
About the Author

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