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When the Potato Failed: Causes and Effects of the 'Last' European Subsistence Crisis, 1845-1850 (Comparative Rural History of the North Sea Area) (Comparative Rural History of the North Sea Area) [Paperback]

By Cormac O'grada (Editor), Richard Paping (Editor) & Eric Vanhaute (Editor)
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Item description for When the Potato Failed: Causes and Effects of the 'Last' European Subsistence Crisis, 1845-1850 (Comparative Rural History of the North Sea Area) (Comparative Rural History of the North Sea Area) by Cormac O'grada, Richard Paping & Eric Vanhaute...

The decade that gave rise to the term 'the Hungry Forties' in Europe is often regarded, and rightly so, as one of deprivation, unrest, and revolution. This book is the first to discuss the subsistence crisis of the 1840s - including the Great Irish Famine and the various political events of 1848 - in a truly comparative way. This subsistence crisis may be divided into two rather distinct elements. On the one hand, the failure of the potato caused by the new, unfamiliar fungus, phytophthera infestans, which first struck Europe in mid-1845, resulted in a catastrophe in Ireland that killed about one million people, and radically transformed its landscape and economy. Poor potato crops in 1845 and in the following years also resulted in significant excess mortality elsewhere in Europe. On the other hand, this period, the year 1846 in particular, was also one of poor wheat and rye harvests throughout much of Europe. Failure of the grain harvest alone rarely resulted in a subsistence crisis, but the combination of poor potato and grain harvests in a single place was a lethal one. Connections between the local and the global, between the economic and the political, and between the rural and the industrial, make the crisis of the late 1840s a multi-layered one. This book offers a comparative perspective on the causes and effects of what is sometimes considered as the 'last' European subsistence crisis. It begins with an extensive introduction that treats the topic in comparative perspective. The subsistence crisis had its most catastrophic impact in Ireland, and three chapters in the current volume are concerned mainly with that country. A fourth chapter uses price data to shed comparative perspective on the crisis, while the remaining nine chapters are case studies covering countries ranging from Sweden to Spain and from Scotland to Prussia. Throughout, the contributors focus on a range of common themes, such as the extent of harvest deficits, the functioning of food markets, fertility and mortality, and public action at local and national levels.



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Item Specifications...


Pages   342
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 6" Height: 9"
Weight:   1.3 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Mar 30, 2007
Publisher   Brepols Publishers
ISBN  2503519857  
ISBN13  9782503519852  


Availability  0 units.


More About Cormac O'grada, Richard Paping & Eric Vanhaute


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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Business & Investing > Economics > General
2Books > Subjects > History > Europe > Ireland > General
3Books > Subjects > History > Europe > Ireland > Potato Famine
4Books > Subjects > History > World > 19th Century
5Books > Subjects > History > World > General



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