Ian Miller

Feminist Activism, Rona Fields and the History of Trauma during the Troubles

by Ian Miller, Ulster University In the early years of the Troubles, some Northern Irish doctors began to worry that conflict was causing psychological and emotional problems. Alex Lyons, a Purdysburn Hospital doctor, investigated a period of rioting in West Belfast in August and September 1969, a time of arson, looting and intimidation that helped …

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The Therapeutic Revolution in Belfast, 1910s-60s: Medical Utopia or Dystopia?

by Ian Miller, Ulster University Belfast Health Week In June 1933, Ulster Hall hosted an event named Belfast Health Week. The Week was intended to ‘impress upon the general public the social and individual importance of hygiene, emphasizing the positive benefits of health rather than the negative results of disease’. Through films, lectures and exhibits, …

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6. Insanity, Poverty and Excessive Tea Drinking in Late-Victorian Belfast

by Ian Miller, Ulster University In 1872, an alarmed lady wrote to the Freeman’s Journal reporting that: Taking shelter in a cottage, near Banbridge, County Down, some time ago, during a shower of rain, and noticing the teapot on the hob, I observed that tea stewed in that way did a great deal of harm. The woman …

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Life and Death in the Asylum, c.1840-1970, Riverside Theatre, Coleraine

On 27 October 2021, Epidemic Belfast contributors Rebecca Watterson, Ian Miller and Michael Kinsella organised an event entitled ‘Life and Death in the Asylum, c.1840-1970’ at the Riverside Theatre, Coleraine. In the nineteenth century, sufferers of mental illness were treated and managed en masse in the asylum. Across Ireland and Britain, the state funded an expansive system …

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1. Industrial Belfast: The Rise of the Pathogenic City, c.1830-1900

by Ian Miller, Ulster University. In 1841, Belfast’s population was just 75,308. By 1911, this had risen to 386,947. The promise of regular paid work in the city’s industries, and lack of industrialisation elsewhere in Ireland, encouraged migration to the north’s industrial capital. Cotton spinning peaked in the 1820s when around 3,500 people were employed …

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