Black Potatoes: The Story of the Great Irish Famine, 1845-1850 - Chapter 6 Summary & Analysis

Susan Campbell Bartoletti
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Chapter 6 Summary and Analysis

In 1847, the workhouses contained about half a million inmates. The workhouse system fell into chaos. Many workhouses turned people away because they were already overcrowded. Others turned them away because, although they had space, they could not feed them. Feeding the workers was especially problematic in areas where the already heavily indebted absentee landlords were also facing bankruptcy. Workhouses like that in Skibberdeen had too little to adequately feed even their own women inmates. Those, of course, who did not gain admission to the workhouses simply "disappeared" or starved to death. It is possible to live for months on a small amount of food because the body cannibalizes itself for vitamins and minerals. The final causes of death by starvation include "dehydration, hypothermia, arrhythmia, and infections." It is estimated that probably ten times as many people died from infections as actually...

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This section contains 780 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Black Potatoes: The Story of the Great Irish Famine, 1845-1850 Study Guide
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