The Memory of the Past: National Memory and Commemoration

  • Vincent J. Cheng
Part of the New Directions in Irish and Irish American Literature book series (NDIIAL)


This chapter takes up two case studies involving Irish national memory and commemoration. The first explores the ways that Joyce’s works—from “The Dead” to Finnegans Wake—treat the historical memory of William III, Prince of Orange (and his horse), at the Battles of Aughrim and the Boyne, the events that sealed the future of Ireland as a British colony and as an island of divided allegiances (orange vs. green), with Unionists revering the memory of King Billy and Republicans despising it. The second case study takes up a more recent battle, the 1916 Easter Rising, and explores the varying and conflicting ways that it has been remembered for the past 100 years, including during the recent 2016 centenary commemorations.


Boyne Aughrim Easter Rising Memory Commemoration Horses King Billy Joyce Padraic Pearse Robert Emmet 

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vincent J. Cheng
    • 1
  1. 1.University of UtahSalt Lake CityUSA

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