[ From the Daily Ireland ] A Professor of Semitic Languages in Tel Aviv University, Israel, identified two prerequisites for the survival, revival and flourishing of the Irish language in Ireland, namely idealism and necessity. Fascinating article.
Respect is lacking.
I pointed earlier to a statement by Northern Ireland’s chief electoral officer Denis Stanley where he insisted that all correspondence to him be done in English only. The Daily Ireland suggests that Mr Stanley should be asked to write out 100 times, in Irish, the following section from the Good Friday Agreement: “All participants recognise the importance of respect, understanding and tolerance in relation to linguistic diversity, including in Northern Ireland, the Irish language, Ulster-Scots and the languages of the various ethnic communities, all of which are part of the cultural wealth of the island of Ireland.” Perhaps it should…
Official refuses to answer in Irish.
A letter from one of the North’s top civil servants to an Irish-language rights group has been described as evidence of the need for language legislation that would guarantee the rights of Irish speakers in their dealings with the state. Chief electoral officer Denis Stanley sent the letter to the Irish-language umbrella group Pobal, making it clear that he wanted correspondence to his office in English only. Pathetic.
Shalini Sinha on the importance of the Irish Language.
Slugger O’Toole carries a wonderful post by Cathal O Foirreidh, pointing to a piece that advocates the elimination of compulsory Irish, followed by a moving piece by a Canadian immigrant of Indian (not Native American or First Nation’s Canadian) ancestry, on the importance of the language. I love this quote: Thus, one of the first things I did when I moved to Ireland was begin the journey of learning Irish – not because I thought it would be easy or was “fascinated”, but because I felt that this was the only way I would really understand the country that was…
They have Irish, but not enough?
Here’s an interesting case of a Northern Ireland family being denied housing in the Connemara gaelteacht, not because they can’t speak Irish, but apparently because they don’t speak it well enough. Slugger O’Toole carries some interesting discussion on the topic.
Call for more imaginative Irish language approach.
The principal of Rice College, Westport, Mr Frank McCarrick, says that a progressive and imaginative approach to the presentation and teaching of the Irish language in secondary schools by the Department of Education could help address the decline in the subject. Without it, he believes the number of students studying it would continue to fall.
John Roberts has no Irish.
Referring, of course, to his lack of knowledge of Irish language, not lack of ancestry. “US Supreme Court nominee John Roberts was concerned that an Irish language letterhead sent by President Reagan to the Irish ambassador might show secret support for the IRA.” I recommend Guinness therapy, in moderation of course!
Irish language community website anyone?
A fellow lurker on the Gaeilge-B listserver is floating the idea of setting up a community website and discussion group for those interested in learning Irish. I’m game!
‘Dingle’ is too good to lose despite love of Irish.
[ From The Kerryman – registration required ] The debate rages on regarding the pending erasure of ‘Dingle’ from street signs and maps.
Dingle/Daingean: You can’t have it both ways, locals told.
The people of Dingle who don’t want the name changed to An Daingean cannot have it both ways, according to Dr. Padraig O Laighin, who said it was reasonable to use the Irish version of the town’s name “given the availability of considerable State support on the basis that it is a Gaeltacht community”.