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Making Empire: A Groundbreaking Book by Professor Jane Ohlmeyer on Ireland’s Role in Early Modern Imperialism

Professor Jane Ohlmeyer, PI on VOICES, will launch her new book Making Empire: Ireland, imperialism, & the early modern world (Oxford University Press) at the Trinity Long Room Hub Arts and Humanities Research Institute on 20 November, 2023.

Chapter 3 on Assimilation is particularly relevant to VOICES.

The book derives from the 2021 Ford Lectures, especially Lecture 3
Jane also delivered the following lecture specifically on widows:

Making Empire examines the unique position of early modern Ireland in the First English Empire, c. 1550–c. 1770s. Ireland was England’s oldest colony. How then did the English empire function in early modern Ireland, and how did this change over time? What did access to European empires mean for people living in Ireland? This book answers these questions by interrogating four interconnected themes. First, that Ireland formed an integral part of the English imperial system. Second, that the Irish operated as agents of empire(s). Third, Ireland served as laboratory in and for the English empire. Finally, it examines the impact that empire(s) had on people living in early modern Ireland.

Whilst the book focuses on Ireland’s place in the English empire, the Irish were trans-imperial and engaged with all of the early modern imperial powers. Making Empires therefore explores connections and comparisons with other European imperial powers, placing the Irish colonial experience in a global context.

Making Empire is based on the 2021 James Ford Lectures, the most prestigious public lecture series hosted by the Faculty of History at the University of Oxford. Jane was the first Irish historian to be invited to give the Ford Lectures since 1977, and only the 11th woman since the inception of the series.