Short film reveals the terrible history of No Irish Need Apply

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tags: discrimination, Irish




Related Link No Irish Need Apply?  By Richard Jensen

A short documentary film chronicling the terrible history of discrimination against the Irish in 1800s Boston is making the rounds at film festivals in Ireland.

It was made by Bill FitzPatrick, an IrishCentral reader from Boston who has delved into researching the history of No Irish Need Apply advertisements his ancestors encountered when the arrived in America.

He was inspired by Rebecca Fried, the amazing teenager from Washington, DC who in 2015 published a scholarly article in the Oxford Journal of Social History disproving the claims of Professor Richard Jensen, who had long been a dominant voice on the topic, arguing that No Irish Need Apply was a myth.

In a wonderfully written and researched rebuttal, Fried challenged Jensen’s claim that “the NINA phenomenon is an ahistorical memory to be explained by ‘delu[sional]’ group psychology and ‘the political need to be bona-fide victims’ rather than by the fact of historic discrimination.”

Instead, she wrote, “the documentary record better supports the earlier view that Irish-Americans have a communal recollection of NINA advertising because NINA advertising did, in fact, exist over a substantial period of United States history, sometimes on a fairly widespread basis.




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