This chapter examines the role of gender within Irish family life, exploring the changing dynamics across the seventy years following the Great Famine of 1847–52. It discusses what was meant by ‘family’ in the nineteenth century and whether the traditional notion of male and female spheres is applicable in an Irish context. Following an examination of the historiography of Irish histories of family, the chapter considers the importance of gender to family life through the lenses of class and occupation. Taking a life course approach, it looks at family life from childhood and adolescence through to death and inheritance.