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Our Tangled Speech: Essays on language and culture

Our Tangled Speech: Essays on language and culture

Aodán Mac Póilin

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Our Tangled Spreech provides a comprehensive overview of the Irish language revival north and south, examining its successes and failures. It gives a fascinating account of historical attitudes towards the Gael and examines the complexities of linguistic and cultural identity.

People are rarely neutral about the Irish language. In Northern Ireland it is a topic which usually creates more heat than light. While attitudes have softened somewhat over the years, polarised views about the language are remarkably persistent. Historic and contemporary efforts to maintain the language have had varied success, but the key goal of creating new sustainable language communities, where inter-generational language transmission is the norm, has yet to be achieved.

Building such communities requires the support and engagement of central and local government, broadcasters, educators and a wide range of other interest groups. It requires a shift in attitudes, appropriate language policies, an in-depth examination of our past and a willingness to learn from it.

This book seeks to address some of these issues. It provides a comprehensive overview of the Irish language revival north and south, examining its successes and failures. It gives a fascinating account of historical attitudes towards the Gael and examines the complexities of linguistic and cultural identity.

Aodán Mac Póilin, Director of the ULTACH Trust, a cross-community Irish language organisation based in Belfast, was uniquely well-positioned to answer these and many more related questions. He provides a comprehensive, insightful and thought-provoking survey of the challenging complexities of culture and language in Northern Ireland. These essays, written between 1990 and 2011, are well-argued, witty and refreshingly honest. This sometimes controversial but always compelling collection will illuminate and stimulate debate. It will appeal to the language activist, academic and general reader alike.

Additional Information

Author Aodán Mac Póilin
Publisher Ulster Historical Foundation
Publication date 7 Dec 2018
Format Hardback
ISBN/EAN 9781909556676

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