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The Daltaí Boards » Archive: 1999-2004 » 2001 (January-June) » Gaeilge: Why are Irish people embaressed to speak it? « Previous Next »

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Colm (194.165.161.125)
Posted on Wednesday, October 25, 2000 - 02:19 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

It's good to see proper Irish language site up and running.
I spent 14 months in the MiddleEast and i came in contact with many nationalities. One thing that annoyed me was say when i was chatting to two people of the same nationality and half way through the conversation they'd start conversing in their own tounge. What annoyed me futher was that I couldn't do the same with my own countrymen/countrywomen. It was not because they didn't know any Irish it was just because they felt embaressed speaking it. Therefore other nationalities came about the notion that Ireland was mono-lingual. Why is this? Nationalists in the North of Ireland love to converse in Irish and learn the language eventhough it is not taught offically in schools. Why then in the Republic is Irish neverused(When I mean 'never' I mean by the population as a whole)? Why don't Irish people see the language as a proud part of our culture, tradition and a means of erasing colonialism.If a langauge is spoken by all for over 2,000 years how can another younger one replace it to the point of destroying the former in 200 years?!
Anybody have anything to add?
Colm Ó Dúill, Co. Cork.

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Laighneach (oak.may.ie - 149.157.1.55)
Posted on Thursday, October 26, 2000 - 08:06 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Remnants of an inferiority complex that the brashness of the celtic tiger makes us embarrassed to admit.

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Seosamh (1cust42.tnt11.nyc3.da.uu.net - 63.23.134.42)
Posted on Thursday, October 26, 2000 - 01:21 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

The practical thing to do, a Choilm, is to speak Irish with those people who don't suffer from that embarassment -- or who want to get over it. You probably already know some people like that and you can meet new ones. They'll range from people who will enjoy using the cúpla focal to people who may be willing to establish an Irish-only relationship with you. We can counter the common syndrome you are describing head on, but also person by person at this different and important level which allows the language to survive and gives you, personally, the chance to speak it, cuma cad é a cheapann an tromlach.

Some of the embarassment is caused by an awareness of how much Irish has been forgotten or never learned in the first place. But when people use it, it comes back.

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liam o briain (202.61.240.198)
Posted on Friday, November 10, 2000 - 11:42 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

As an irish speaker living in limerick(23years old) I bemoan the fact that I know only three people around my own age who are willing to speak it with me.The Irish very definitely have an inferiority complex.

Is mise le meas,
liam o briain

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liam o briain (202.61.240.198)
Posted on Friday, November 10, 2000 - 11:42 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

As an irish speaker living in limerick(23years old) I bemoan the fact that I know only three people around my own age who are willing to speak it with me.The Irish very definitely have an inferiority complex.

Is mise le meas,
liam o briain

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tccarlton (lebo40.osprey.net - 206.252.174.170)
Posted on Wednesday, November 22, 2000 - 12:53 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Dia duit,

As an American with Irish ancestors, I would applaud any Irishman to speak their native language. I have decided to teach myself the language. It will be hard for me b/c I have horrible memory but I hope to know enough for my future visit to the Emerald Isle. I hope to one day live in Ireland, but that is way in the future.

I am thrilled to have found this site. It's been very helpful already.

The Irish have no reason to be embarrassed about their language. It's wonderful and ancient. When you speak Gaelic, you insure that your great ancestors live on.

Slán go fóill,

Charity

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Martin (p225.as1.portlaoise1.eircom.net - 159.134.252.225)
Posted on Saturday, April 28, 2001 - 01:24 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

I love to speak Irish.Even if im not fluent I try to use a couple of words and will speak bad Irish if i have any chance of getting my point across :).
visit
EMerald Isle
Éire Go Deo!
J

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Aibrean (134.241.94.236)
Posted on Monday, April 30, 2001 - 08:55 am:   Edit Post Print Post

I am trying to learn Irish, myself. I am a 21 year old American with a strong Irish heritage, and I feel that it's important for the lanuage not to die out... we have one of the greatest cultures known to man, so why not speak the language also? Keeping such a tradition and culture alive would truly benefit us. All I ever hear is Spanish. They all seem to assume we should all know it and speak it, but that's rubbish. I want my Irish Gaelic. Can we not band together and save our gloriousness??? Why let everyone else take over for us?

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James McGinnis (host2165.scotlandhealth.org - 207.59.152.165)
Posted on Sunday, August 05, 2001 - 12:18 am:   Edit Post Print Post

I just returned from Ireland. My wife and I spent a week touring the west. Most of our time was in the Gaeltacht regions. We were in Dingle and later in Spiddle and out on Inis Mor. I found the language very prevalent and readily "accessible" in Spiddle and on Inis Mor. In Dingle, however, one really had to work at finding the language. As soon as we entered a shop or pub, those speaking Irish would switch to English. I found this VERY frustrating.

I think this is one of the most wonderful languages spoken. Perhaps that is because of its scarcity or just the history of its suppression. I've self taught with two courses. One is "Learing Irish" and the other is Micheal O'Shiadhal's course. The name escapes me right now. I am not even close to fluent or even functional but I found the people VERY willing to indulge my attempts. Hearing the various nuances between the areas was also very interesting from a student's point of view.

I can't wait to attend a Daltai immersion course!

Keep speaking, keep insisting and above all--keep teaching!!

James McGinnis

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Liam O Briain (ns2.hobbit.com.au - 203.38.81.25)
Posted on Tuesday, August 07, 2001 - 07:36 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Why do small countries such as Denmark and Iceland speak their languages? Because they are proud of them. I realise English is the global language and everyone needs it but why not be bilingual. When abroad I want to speak irish with fellow irish people to show foreigners we have our own language . Finally and controvesially I think irish speaking irish people are more or truer irish then non speakers.

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Aonghus (vpn.parthus.com - 62.221.5.1)
Posted on Wednesday, August 08, 2001 - 03:54 am:   Edit Post Print Post

>Why do small countries such as Denmark and Iceland speak their languages?

Because they were never colonised! The Danish speaking minority in Schleswig (Germany) is struggling to keep it's language, in an area which was danish about 200 years ago.

The Sorb language in eastern Germany is in a worse state than Irish.

It will take a long time to get the "Irish won't sell they cow" mentality out of people's psyche.

Actually, Irish probably will sell the (tourism) cow.

Also, I think globalisation and english will carve out niches for minority languages - I think the internet has helped a lot in giving "diaspora" irish speakers a chance to communicate.

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Liam Ó Briain (intern37.lnk.telstra.net - 139.130.10.72)
Posted on Friday, August 10, 2001 - 06:49 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Fair point Aonghus about colonisation. It's something that other languages did not contend with. I would like to suggest the learning of irish songs for the leaving cert oral irish exam say 5 or six songs and everyone gets 5 per cent for it. I know Molly na gcuach ní chuileanain, Óro sé do bheatha bhaile, Tá mo cleamhnas déanta, A Neainsín Bhán, Mo ghille Mear, Báidín Fhéilimí, Preab san ól and Cailleach an Airgid. Here's an idea- could people contribute the words of songs to the forum for us to learn as I am sure many people would like to learn them.

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Seosamh (1cust46.tnt67.nyc3.da.uu.net - 63.57.12.46)
Posted on Saturday, August 11, 2001 - 01:36 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Molaim _Guthanna in Éag/Voices Silenced_ le James McCloskey ISBN 1 901176 24 X d'éinne ar spéis leo staid na Gaeilge nó cúrsaí teangacha i gcoitianta. I recommend the book above to anyone interested in Irish or language matters in general. This handsome little book is bilingual and an easy read with fresh, interesting and important observations on an issue that is relevant to both the Irish (the status and prospects for Irish) and Americans and other English speakers (who typically have trouble with the concept of the bi- or multilingualism that is normal in human life.) There are some fifty pages of text for each language.

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