Katherine Stafford | How Ireland might have been leased in perpetuity to the Jews – and what the novelist Maria Edgeworth made of it | Thursday 11 September 2014 at 7.30pm


staffordIn 1656, political theorist James Harrington made a startling proposal to Oliver Cromwell, Lord Protector of England, who had that year failed to resolve the English Jewish question: should Jews be admitted to England as full citizens? Harrington’s bizarre proposal was to lease Ireland in perpetuity to the Jews, having removed the Anglo‐Irish landlords. In 1817, Anglo‐Irish author Maria Edgeworth wrote ‘Harrington’, in an attempt to redress her own earlier insulting depictions of Jews. However flawed, her novel can be seen as an important link in the struggle against English anti‐Semitism, from James Harrington’s proposal for a Jewish Ireland, through the 1753 ‘Jewish Naturalization Act’, to George Elliot’s 1876 masterpiece, Daniel Deronda.


museumlogoThursday 11 September 2014 at 7.30pm

Irish Jewish Museum
3 Walworth Road (off Victoria Street), Portobello, Dublin 8


Admission free donations gratefully accepted

Tel:  085 7067357  | info@jewishmuseum.ie 


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