Myles Dungan Four Killings: Land Hunger, Murder and A Family in the Irish Revolution


Code 9781800244856
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The story of a single family during the Irish Revolution, Four Killings is a book about political murder, and the powerful hunger for land and the savagery it can unleash.

Myles Dungan's family was involved in four violent deaths between 1915 and 1922. Jack Clinton, an immigrant small farmer from County Meath, was murdered in the remote and lawless Arizona territory by a powerful rancher's hired assassin; three more died in Ireland, and each death is compellingly reconstructed in this extraordinary book.

What unites these deaths is the violence that engulfed Ireland during the war of independence, but also the passions unleashed by arguments over the ownership of the soil.

In focusing on one family, Four Killings offers an original perspective on this still controversial period: a prism through which the moral and personal costs of violence, and the elemental conflict over land, come alive in surprising ways.

About the Author

Myles Dungan is a broadcaster and historian. He presents The History Show on RTE Radio 1 and is an adjunct lecturer and Fulbright scholar in the School of History and Archives, University College, Dublin. He has also compiled and presented a number of award-winning historical documentaries. He is the author of numerous works on Irish and American history and holds a PhD from Trinity College, Dublin.

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'Dungan knows his history; he also knows how to tell a story... A gem of a book'
- David McCullagh, RTE Culture

'A vivid and chilling narrative... Confronts uncomfortable questions that still need answering'
- Roy Foster, Emeritus Professor of Irish History, University of Oxford

'Sober and intelligent... Dungan does a fine job of showing that little people can make history too'
- Andrew Lynch, Business Post

'Narrative history, told through a unique prism'
- Irish Sunday Independent

'Marries acute storytelling skills with scholarship, fortified throughout by the author's wry sense of humour'
- Michael Heney, author of The Arms Crisis of 1970

'An engrossing account of the intimacies of political violence through the meticulous excavation of an Irish family's entanglements with struggles over land and nation across two continents'
- Maurice Walsh, author of Bitter Freedom

'Not just a riveting story of the fortunes of an extended family, but an object lesson in the interrogation of changing versions of history over time'
- Catriona Crowe, author of Dublin 1911

'The book is written in a lively and flowing style, and the selection of black and white family photos provides a fascinating peek into the lives of those whose stories are portrayed'
- Family Tree Magazine

'The story, told skilfully and coherently, holds the attention throughout and draws attention to an often-neglected aspect of the independence struggle - land hunger. The killings are treated sensitively, as are the consequences for all concerned'
- Irish Times


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