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Interview with Paul Darby on 19/03/2010

Interview with Paul Darby on 20/03/2010 part 2

Gaelic Games, Nationalism and the Irish Diaspora in the United States

Paul Darby (author)
Paperback / softback,
Publication date:
24th August 2009

Author Biography

Paul Darby is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Sports Studies at the University of Ulster (Jordanstown). He is author of Africa, Football and FIFA: Politics, Colonialism and Resistance and joint editor of Emigrant Players: Sport and the Irish Diaspora (with David Hassan) and Soccer and Disaster: International Perspectives (with Gavin Mellor and Martin Johnes). He sits on the editorial board of the international journal, Soccer and Society and the advisory board of Impumelelo: The Interdisciplinary Electronic Journal of African Sport. He has written numerous scholarly articles dealing with the relationship between sport and society in a range of contexts.


Gaelic sports have been played for over a century in America, and provide a revealing window into the lives and culture of the Irish community there. Much has been written about the ways that the successes of their politicians, the efforts of the Catholic Church and the solace, identity and friendships offered by a whole range of their social, political and charitable organisations helped the Irish adapt to life in urban America. Far less has been said though about the role of sport, let alone Gaelic games, in allowing them to make sense of their new surroundings and deal with the rigours of adjusting to and progressing in the New World. "Gaelic Games, Nationalism and the Irish Diaspora in the United States" redresses this neglect by uncovering the origins and development of Gaelic sport and by exploring the political, economic and social impact that the GAA has had on Irish communities in America. New York, Boston, Chicago and San Francisco, cities that were not only focal points of Irish immigration but were also the main centres of GAA activity in the US, are taken as case studies.The book draws on detailed archival research, interviews with leading figures in the GAA in America and contains a selection of rare photographs of clubs, teams and players of significance which help to bring to life a remarkable story of cultural preservation, persistence and passion for Gaelic games.