chapter  14
16 Pages

: Encounters with Postcolonialism in Irish Archaeology

ByCharles E. Orser, Jr

The question of whether Ireland is noncolonial, colonial, or postcolonial is hotly contested, and archaeologists (like historians and other scholars) have yet to reach a consensus on an answer (Ruane 1992). One’s view on the question of Irish postcolonialism, or even of a colonial past, is largely a reflection of one’s political views. Though perhaps a gross oversimplification, those generally to the right of the political spectrum tend to downplay colonialism (and thus deny a postcolonial condition), while those to the left argue that Ireland was indeed colonial in the past and that it now exhibits many of the characteristics of a postcolonial society.