Renaissance Nation is the story of how the Pope’s Children rewrote the rules for Ireland.
In four decades, bookended by the visits of the pope in September 1979 and August 2018, Ireland has managed to become one of the wealthiest and most progressive nations in the world.
Here David McWilliams presents the story of modern Ireland and how, once we threw off the shackles and replaced the torpor of collective dogma with the vibrancy of individual freedom, the economy too started to motor.
Meet the everyman revolutionaries who made it all happen, heroes like Sliotar Mom and Flat White Man. Feel the pulse of the Radical Centre and celebrate the optimism of a tolerant, accepting, ‘live and let live’ nation.
In a world where other nations are divided, their economies stalled, lurching to the extremes, convulsed by existential fights pitting one part of the population against the other, Renaissance Nation shows how a well off, relatively chilled Ireland, with a growing economy and surfing a wave of liberal optimism, may not be perfect, but it isn’t a bad place to be.
A triumph of popular economics and social history, this is the story of how, almost without anyone noticing, an insurgent middle class carried off something extraordinary — a quiet revolution — and with it, reshaped our national destiny.