Encounters Across Cultures
The issues addressed all look ‘beyond Ireland’. In considering the creative frictions and fictions that result from the dissolving of old loyalties, these essays examine contested concepts such as ‘the nation’, and attempt to shed light on global forces that demand cultural re-definitions and transformations. The world order that let loose the Celtic Tiger has brought, together with a diversified Ireland, new forms of dependence. It is one of the main aims of this book to explore how Irish writers have regarded this diversification and contested that dependence.
Martin Shaw Warning Signs and Ref lexivity in Nan Joyce’s Anti-Traveller Protest Story 139
Martin Shaw Warning Signs and Ref lexivity in Nan Joyce’s Anti-Traveller Protest Story Irish Traveller Nan Joyce’s transcribed life story, My Life on the Road: An Autobiography by Nan Joyce, was first published in 1985 under a dif ferent title and is one of the very few published Irish Traveller life stories.1 Joyce was a political activist and a candidate in the 1982 General Election in Ireland, and her candidature was, as Joyce states, a strategy ‘to get publicity for travellers’ rights’.2 This political aspect of Joyce’s subjectivity is evident in My Life and even though the ‘I’ in the life story incorporates a multiplicity of interrelated subjectivities, there is an overt political voice that perme- ates the various narratives. Joyce was an independent candidate and ran partly against what Patricia McCarthy has called a ‘straightforwardly racist “community” candidate who stood on a ticket of Get the Knackers out of Tallaght.’3 The word ‘knacker’ is a derogatory term for Irish Travellers or Mincéir, and Joyce’s life story was published at a time when Traveller rep- resentatives began to enter formal politics in order to resist and challenge the usage of such derogatory terms, to question the premises of Travellers’ negatively orientated social classification and to participate in the struggle 1 Quotations and references to Joyce’s life story will be made using the second edition of her book, My Life on the Road: An Autobiography by Nan Joyce (Dublin: A. & A. Farmar, 2000). It will be referred to as My...
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