Ireland and the irish diaspora

Authored by: Paul Darby

Routledge Handbook of Sport, Race and Ethnicity

Print publication date:  September  2016
Online publication date:  September  2016

Print ISBN: 9781138816954
eBook ISBN: 9781315745886
Adobe ISBN: 9781317596677


 Download Chapter



It is somewhat of a truism that the ‘Irish’, defined here as those born and resident in the island of Ireland who consider themselves to be ethnically Irish as well as those who comprise the wider Irish diaspora, are often defined by their engagement in and relationship to sport. Sport possesses significant social, political, economic, and cultural significance for the Irish. Its centrality in Irish cultural life is exemplified by the fact that, despite being a relatively small geographical entity, Ireland, north and south, has produced a high number of world-class men and women athletes who have excelled at the highest levels of their chosen sport. In the case of boxing, for example, Ireland has a long and rich history of punching above its weight, with the Irish boxing landscape peppered with world titles in the professional code, and European, world and Olympic medals in the amateur version. The recent successes of Ireland’s golfing quartet of McIlroy, Clarke, McDowell and Harrington, who won nine major titles between them between 2005 and 2015, is another case in point.

Search for more...
Back to top

Use of cookies on this website

We are using cookies to provide statistics that help us give you the best experience of our site. You can find out more in our Privacy Policy. By continuing to use the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.