Restorative Justice For The Celtic Peoples

Returning to the issue of righting old wrongs, what might be described as restorative justice for dispossessed cultures, Paula Young Lee makes these observations on the decision by Barack Obama to officially recognise the name of the highest peak on the North American continent, Denali: “For decades, the Alaska Federation of Natives has been pushing to restore… Read More Restorative Justice For The Celtic Peoples

58% Support Welsh Teaching For Children In English-Speaking Schools

ITV News in the UK has a headline-grabbing story on its website: “Exclusive poll: 64% oppose compulsory Welsh to age 16”. The article goes on to state that: “…nearly two-thirds of people oppose the current situation where it is compulsory for schoolchildren to learn Welsh [as a] second language up until the age of 16.… Read More 58% Support Welsh Teaching For Children In English-Speaking Schools

Putting The Éire In Ireland

For the last four or five years of An Sionnach Fionn I have been promoting the potential benefits of “language tourism” for Ireland’s economy. The indigenous culture of this island nation represents a largely untapped source of prosperity for the national economy, and not just the education sector or the Gaeltachtaí. As I stated in the second month of ASF’s existence, way back… Read More Putting The Éire In Ireland

Síle Na gCrann

Remarkable the things one can find in nature when one is out an’ about. However, can anyone else see it? An organic Síle na gCrann? Or should that be Síle an Chrainn? Quite possibly it is just my artistic eye tracing patterns that are not there. In any case, more on the familiar man-made Síle na gCíoch here, not to… Read More Síle Na gCrann

Celtic Cosmology, Perspectives from Ireland and Scotland

Over the last two decades relatively few studies have been published analysing the cosmological traditions of the Celtic-speaking peoples, at least by academic authors. There was a lot of interest in such matters in the 1980s and early ‘90s, coupled with tentative suggestions about the composition of native Irish or Welsh beliefs in the composition of the… Read More Celtic Cosmology, Perspectives from Ireland and Scotland

It Seems That Bigotry Unites As Well As Divides

  Continuing with the controversies that have arisen in the eastern Scottish region of Fife where British nationalist politicians from the main Unionist parties have sought to impede the provision of bilingual services to citizens who speak the indigenous Scottish (Gaelic) language we have this frustrated reaction from two local doctors, featured in the Courier newspaper: “NHS Fife could lose two much-needed consultants… Read More It Seems That Bigotry Unites As Well As Divides

The English Empire Strikes Back In Scotland

Following on from yesterday’s post examining press reports that Dundee City Council had agreed to reverse efforts to place the English and Scottish (Gaelic) languages on an equal footing in Scotland’s fourth largest city through the provision of bilingual services and public signage comes this news from the council area of Fife. Politicians from the main British nationalist… Read More The English Empire Strikes Back In Scotland

The United Languages Of Europe

Contrast and compare these stories from Scotland on the Scottish (Gaelic) language. First up, from the Courier: “Ambitious plans to promote Gaelic in Dundee have been significantly scaled back. Council chiefs have been forced to slash key elements of the proposals after opponents questioned the city’s links with the language and the potential costs involved.… Read More The United Languages Of Europe

Translation Fail

Cautioning on the perils of machine translation, especially when expectations surpass achievable results, Michael Bauer on his Dear Developer blog posts a letter he has written to the Conservative MSP Murdo Fraser following the latter’s suggestion that Scottish (Scottish Gaelic) be added to the list of languages available on Google Translate: “I’m sure that this is a well-intentioned idea but in my professional opinion,… Read More Translation Fail

Prosecutions In Catalonia, Political Revolution In Scotland

The newly authoritarian tone of politics and government in Spain becomes more evident with every passing week. Following a range of laws passed by Madrid banning many forms of public protest we now have reports that the regional government in Barcelona may be prosecuted by the Spanish state following the recent ad hoc independence referendum for Catalonia… Read More Prosecutions In Catalonia, Political Revolution In Scotland

Scottish Gaelic And Glasgow University

The University of Glasgow or Oilthigh Ghlaschu is celebrating its historic links with the Scottish-speaking communities of Scotland thanks to a project called Sgeul na Gàidhlig aig Oilthigh Ghlaschu, as reported by the Scotsman newspaper: “ONE OF Scotland’s oldest universities has had a continuous presence of Gaelic speakers for more than 500 years, a new study has found. Researchers… Read More Scottish Gaelic And Glasgow University

Samhain Shona Daoibh

The sun has set, the bonfires are being lit, and the Feis Shamhna is upon us: the nocturnal festival of Samhain marking the commencement of the new year in the Celtic calendars of Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man. This ancient celebration was partly assimilated by the Christian religions in the Medieval period as All Saints’ Day or All Hallows’ Eve (Halloween) and has been revived in recent… Read More Samhain Shona Daoibh

An Leabhar Beag Gorm, The Little Blue Book

Last week Wilson McLeod took to the website Bella Caledonia to criticise the glaring absence of the native Scottish (Gaelic) language from the referendum on independence in Scotland. In a well argued piece he attacked the off-hand treatment of Scottish-speaking communities and citizens by the SNP-led “Yes” campaign and the dismissal of their requests for… Read More An Leabhar Beag Gorm, The Little Blue Book

Scotland Requires Some Gaelic Solidarity

Until recent weeks the Irish media was relatively quiet on events in Scotland expecting, like most commentators around the globe, for the British Unionist “No” campaign to defeat the SNP-led “Yes” side in the upcoming referendum on independence. That was certainly the given wisdom based upon the confidence of the metropolitan elites in London and the… Read More Scotland Requires Some Gaelic Solidarity