Ireland's unique position as the only state in the European Union to have been colonised, coupled with the ambivalent experiences of Irish people within the British Empire, means that issues of 'race' in Ireland are overlaid by complex social and historical forces. This book is a unique analysis of the racialisation of Irish identities. The author examines key phases in the historical development of an Irish 'racial' consciousness, including 16th century colonisation and 19th century immigration to America and Great Britain. He then examines the legacy of this relationship, both in terms of the new migration into Ireland and relations with indigenous minorities -- travellers and Irish Jews. Garner explores the problematic links between nationalist ideologies and racism. He assesses the economic, social and political factors framing the experience of minorities in contemporary Ireland, and places these in a broader European context.