The University of Wisconsin Press

Irish History / British History / Politics

Sinn Féin
A Hundred Turbulent Years
Brian Feeney

History of Ireland and the Irish Diaspora

James S. Donnelly, Jr., and Thomas Archdeacon, Series Editors

"Who here really believes we can win a war through the ballot box? But will anyone object if, with a ballot paper in one hand and an Armalite in the other, we take power in Ireland?"—
Danny Morrison, 1981

Sinn Féin ("only ourselves") is one of the most controversial political movements in Ireland. Here, for the first time, is the complete story of the rise and fall—and rise again—of a party that repeatedly has reshaped its identity over the course of a hundred years, moving from dual monarchy to dual strategy — the gun and the ballot box.

From Arthur Griffith to Gerry Adams, this is a roll-call of major personalities from Irish and British history and politics, including Eamon de Valera, Countess Constance Markievicz, David Lloyd George, Michael Collins, Ruairí Ó Brádaigh, Cathal Goulding, Tomás MacGiolla, Margaret Thatcher, and Martin McGuinness.

Now at the beginning of the twenty-first century, Sinn Féin seems poised to play a pivotal role in the Irish political arena, north and south, well into the future. Its place in history is still being written.

"An analytical and narrative masterpiece. . . . Brian Feeney has managed to recount the roller-coaster history of Sinn Féin in a balanced and extremely vivid manner."—Declan Kiberd, University College, Dublin

Copublished with the O'Brien Press, Dublin.

Brian Feeney, a political columnist with the Irish News, is a leading nationalist commentator and frequent broadcaster on Northern Ireland affairs. He is the co-author of Lost Lives: The Stories of Men, Women and Children Who Died as a Result of the Northern Ireland Troubles, which won the Christopher Ewart-Biggs award in 2001 for its contribution to reconciliation in Ireland and Europe. Feeney is also head of the history department at St. Mary's University College, Belfast.

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cover of Feeney book show's Irish political funeral

March 2003
463 pp., 6 x 9
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Paper $19.95 t
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"An easy read, a popular history which glitters with insight and valuably illuminates the present. . . . [Feeney] has laid out a mass of fact, quote, reminiscence and deft observation in a work which, among its other qualities, includes the best and most level-headed account of the Provos in the Peace Process yet to emerge."
—Eamonn McCann, Sunday Tribune, Ireland

"Brian Feeney's book fills a gap in the extensive market on books about Ireland north and south. . . . Well worth a read."
—Dr. Mo Mowlam, former Secretary of State for Northern Ireland

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Updated May 30, 2013

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