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Language Issues

Ireland, France, Spain

Wesley Hutchinson and Clíona Ní Ríordáin

The issue of language in Ireland has been at the centre of much heated debate in the closely linked spheres of culture and politics at least since the early 1980s. The essays in this collection seek to place the ongoing debate on Irish and Ulster-Scots on both sides of the Irish border within a broader comparative frame with specific reference to positions on lesser-used languages in the very different contexts of France and Spain.
The result is a book that looks at the situation of a number of lesser-used western European languages within three broad frames: cultural politics, the education system and relations with the state (or states) in which they are spoken. While Irish runs off with the lion’s share of the attention, the reader will find work on Ulster-Scots, Welsh, Breton, Basque and Catalan.
The book also reflects broader choices made by Irish studies in France which are structured within a strongly transdisciplinary frame. Thus, the texts that feature in the present volume operate in various, often interconnecting fields: literature, history, geopolitics, linguistics and cultural studies.
Contents: Aodán Mac Póilin: «Something of a Cultural War.» Linguistic Politics in Northern Ireland – Ian Adamson: The Ulster-Scots Movement. A Personal Account – Frank Ferguson: Ulster-Scots Revival or Ullans Twilight? States in Play in Contemporary Ulster-Scots Literature – Diarmait Mac Giolla Chríost: The Turn to Rights in the Language Question – Grace Neville: «I Got Second in Latin, Greek, and English, and Eleventh in French.» Attitudes to Language(s) in the Correspondence of Daniel O’Connell (1775-1847) – Adeline Tissier-Moston: The Campaign for the Recognition of the Irish Language in National Schools (1874-1904) – Patricia Fournier-Noël: Immigrant Pupils and the Irish Language in Republic of Ireland Primary Schools – Pádraig Ó Duibhir: «It’s Only a Language.» The Attitudes and Motivation of Irish-medium Education Students to the Irish Language – Ronan Barré : L’irlandais peut-il seulement être une langue ? – Yann Bevant: What Future for the Irish Language? Elements of Comparison with Brittany – Tangui Pennec : Les grands patrons bretons et la langue bretonne. Investissement sentimental ou engagement politique ? – Barbara Loyer : Les territoires de la langue basque. Conflits et représentations – Cyril Trépier : Les patrons catalans et la langue. Attitudes diverses.