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Patrimoine/Cultural Heritage in France and Ireland

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Edited By Eamon Maher and Eugene O'Brien

This collection of essays explores the concept of patrimoine, a French word used to denote cultural heritage, traditional customs and practices – the Gaelic equivalent is dúchas – and the extent to which it impacts on France and Ireland. Borrowing from disciplines as varied as sociology, cultural theory, literature, marketing, theology, history, musicology and business, the contributors to the volume unearth interesting manifestations of how patrimoine resonates across cultural divides and bestows uniqueness and specificity on countries and societies, sometimes in a subliminal manner.

Issues covered include debt as heritage, Guinness as a cultural icon of «Irishness», faith-based tourism, the Huguenot heritage in Ireland, Irish musical inheritances since Independence, Skellig Michael and the commodification of Irish culture.

With a Foreword by His Excellency M. Stéphane Crouzat, French Ambassador to Ireland, this collection breaks new ground in assessing the close links between France and Ireland, links that will become all the more important in light of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union.

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10 ‘Enfants d’ici, parents d’ailleurs’ (Maguy Pernot-Deschamps)

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Maguy Pernot-Deschamps

10 ‘Enfants d’ici, parents d’ailleurs’

‘“Going to England” or “across the water”’,1 ‘[franchir] la Méditerranée’ and ‘[entrer] en France’2 [crossing the Mediterranean and entering France] – here are two experiences that would seem to be literally miles apart, and yet they share a number of features at a particular period in twentieth-century history, the post-war era. Emigration from Ireland to England, or from Algeria to France, had started long before the war years but, from 1946 onwards, both Ireland and Algeria witnessed a massive migration from their shores to a country that either used to be, or was still, a colonial power with close historical links. Although Ireland had partially achieved self-government in the early 1920s, the post-war economy had not lived up to expectations, and England was the nearest, almost natural destination for thousands of young people suffering destitution in rural areas. At the same period the colonial system in Algeria was going through a crisis that drove thousands of the poorest of the poor from country villages to the big towns and then on to France.

Both migration trends were facilitated by freedom of movement across the sea. Controls that had been put in place between England and Ireland during the war were discontinued in the early 1950s. Between 1945 and 1975, Algerians also travelled freely between their country and the new land. Moreover, in the aftermath of the Second World War, both migrations were actively promoted...

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