From the United States (but of course), and more specifically, the city of Seattle (naturally), a video illustration of “100 Years of Beauty – Ireland“, a phenomenon which apparently separated the country into two separate fashion cultures for some place called “the Republic of Ireland” and an even more mysterious territory known as “North Ireland” (?). Which will come as a surprise to pretty much every person who has lived on this tiny, homogenised island nation for the past one hundred years or so. A foreign-imposed border may have divided us, clothes and hairstyles most certainly did not. That was – and is – the farcical nature of British “partition”. North or south, Ireland looks identical because it is identical. That is why the British unionist minority in the north-east paint kerbstones red, white and blue, hang Union Jack flags from lamp-posts and deface Irish language road signs. Because they know, as pathetic as those things may be, there is precious little else they can do to visually differentiate north from south, unionist from nationalist.
Ok, the behind-the-scenes videos seem to indicate that the people producing the original presentation meant well, but it’s not as if Ireland was situated in the wilds of the Hindu Kush. And it’s not as if the US is lacking in Irish immigrants, or knowledgeable Irish-Americans, or people with no connection to Ireland at all but who can still use Google, who might have said, “Er, are you sure about all this?“, and maybe point out a few incongruities in the terminology and interpretations. “Colonial” good. “North Ireland” bad. Etcetera.