Michael Collins: The Man Who Made Ireland: The Man Who Made Ireland

Michael Collins: The Man Who Made Ireland: The Man Who Made Ireland

by Tim Pat Coogan

Paperback(First Edition)

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Overview

When the Irish nationalist Michael Collins signed the Anglo-Irish Treaty in December 1921, he observed to Lord Birkenhead that he may have signed his own death warrant. In August 1922 that prophecy came true when Collins was ambushed, shot and killed by a compatriot, but his vision and legacy lived on. Tim Pat Coogan's biography presents the life of a man whose idealistic vigor and determination were matched by his political realism and organizational abilities. This is the classic biography of the man who created modern Ireland.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780312295110
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: 05/17/2002
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 524
Sales rank: 511,314
Product dimensions: 6.13(w) x 9.34(h) x 1.46(d)

About the Author

Tim Pat Coogan is one of the best known journalists and historians in Ireland. Former editor of the Irish Press, his books include The Troubles, The IRA, and Wherever Green is Worn.

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Michael Collins: The Man Who Made Ireland: The Man Who Made Ireland 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
DonSiano on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Michael Collins was an extraordinary man, the inventor, it is said, of modern urban guerilla warfare; the man who led the war to end 700 years of British occupation of Ireland. Here was a man that was not a cog in in some vast socio-economic machine, whose only desire is "to just get along." He was one of those who didn't experience the benefits of the coexistence of two cultures in one land, because one of them was politically and economically savaging the other. He did not have as his primary goal in life to accumulate the accouterments of a materialistic civilization for himself, nor did he ever have a mortgage to pay. He never owned a car. He never formed a family. He never knew such idiots who populate the safety committees of the industrial organizations in our own time, nor the phonies who infest our academies, longing for tenure. He loved his culture, as it was, and resented outsiders who had only scorn for it. He was a leader of men, a man of action, a stickler for detail, who always knew what he wanted to accomplish. His physical courage was unimaginable to most men, even to those of his own time and place. His outstanding political skills and ability to do what was required to achieve the achievable was unmatched by any of the politicos and hotheads who surrounded him. His primary task in the rebellion was in counter-intelligence, which he came to see required the assassination of informants and torturers, detectives and G-men, and the higher-ups of the British intelligence services who directed it all and placed a price on his head. This culminated in a "Bloody Sunday" in which his men attacked the "Cairo Gang" in their lodgings, some still in their beds, killing 19 of them. The Brits retaliated with a massacre of unarmed spectators at a football match, but ultimately it resulted in the opening of negotiations. Incredibly, Collins was chosen to lead the negotiating team, and wound up across the table from Lloyd George, Austen Chamberlin, and Winston Churchill. He brought home an agreement for the Free State. Coogan tells his tale very thoroughly, at length, and with a satisfying balance of an attention to fact, considered speculation, and telling anecdote. He is an accomplished historian who knows his subject intimately. The author has written on the order of a dozen books on the modern history of Ireland, and is widely recognized for his authority, but not necessarily for an "objectivity" that belies the need for drawing lessons that should be the goal of any historian. The book is at times, perhaps, a little too detailed for the general reader, but it is something of a "definitive biography", so I can forgive him for this. It is over 500 pages long with a very good bibliography, footnotes, and a terrific index. The 17 pictures are glossy and clear and add a lot to the story. One of the most rewarding of things about reading this book is that it led me, I think, to a greater understanding of the events in Iraq, also suffering under an occupation by a hostile power, being fought by patriots and coreligionists in an urban setting, whose enemies from another land and religion label them terrorists and murderers.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed reading this book- I got the impression that Michael Collins was both a rambunctious fella from County Cork and a dedicated Irish nationalist. Though Eamon de Valera seemed to be more prominent in the political part of the nationalist movement, Collins' involvement in the guerrilla war against the British from 1919-1921 was critical to the eventual Anglo-Irish Treaty and the start of Ireland's progress towards becoming an independent republic. The fact that Collins was able to do a lot of organization while traveling to places on a bicycle shows how flexible and practical he was in his planning. I have no doubt that other great biographies of Michael Collins exist, but this is a definite start!
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Guest More than 1 year ago
An absolutely terrific read that stirs nearly every human emotion as Coogan walks you through a great mans life. From the environment which raised M.C. to become a soldier and a leader, to the circumstances surrounding his controversial death it's all included in the usual 'no stone unturned' style of T.P. Coogan. What I enjoyed most was the authors' use of personal letters of Collins' which allows the reader to 'get to know' the historical figure in question and puts a human face on a man that was larger than life. An awesome book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I great guy to establish Ireland. Fight a war with England. If you are Irish, you need to read this. A great book of our history. I loved it. I will read it again!