NEW BOOK: The Irish Presidency: Power, Ceremony and Politics


Although the office of President of Ireland has attracted a great deal of public attention, especially since the election of Mary Robinson in 1990, the presidency has been the subject of little analysis. This gap in our knowledge of Irish politics is filled by this timely collection, which brings together a set of studies that explore the political role of the Irish presidency from a comparative perspective.

The background to the creation of the presidency in 1937 is considered alongside a detailed assessment of the political, social and symbolic functions of the office.

The contributors examine the method of nomination and election – as well as the performance in office – of each president, to provide a comprehensive understanding of the Irish presidency and its holders over the last 75 years.

‘I commend the editors and contributors on a fine volume of essays. I have no doubt that it will be a valuable tool to inform readers and students about the genesis, history and contemporary nature of the Irish Presidency.’
– Michael D. Higgins, President of Ireland

Table of Contents

  1. The President of Ireland: a constitutional and political figurehead? ~ John Coakley (UCD) and Kevin Rafter (DCU)
  2. The President of Ireland in comparative perspective ~ Robert Elgie (DCU)
  3. The Prehistory of the Irish Presidency ~ John Coakley (UCD)
  4.  The political role of the President of Ireland ~ Michael Gallagher (TCD)
  5. Presidential Elections in Ireland ~ Theresa Reidy (UCC)
  6. Setting the Tone: The Early Presidents ~ Ciara Meehan (UCD)
  7. Redefining the Presidency: The politics of a “non-political” office ~ Kevin Rafter (DCU)
  8. Transforming the Presidency: Activist presidents and gender politics ~ Yvonne Galligan (QUB)
  9. Into the Future: the 2011 Presidential Election and its Consequence ~ Eoin O’Malley (DCU)

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