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30-12-2016, 09:19   #1
luckylucky
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Where to learn Irish and be part of a community?

For the first time in my adult life I am interested in learning Irish.
What triggered this in short was living in Navarra, North of Spain for a while where the Basque language is reviving and growing and when I thought of learning it I had the realisation how ridiculous that would be when I can't even speak the language of my forefathers.

After having just come back to Ireland, and weighing up where to live if I decide to stay, was wondering are there any particular places where an Irish revival is taking off, where you can literally hear it on the street at least occasionally and where there are opportunities to learn? Sorry if this is a silly question but I haven't lived in Ireland for about 13 years or so.
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05-01-2017, 13:59   #2
Poll Dubh
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The Gaeltacht still has areas where some of the community still speak Irish to each other but it is declining everywhere.
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05-01-2017, 18:44   #3
Bigfellalixnaw
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I'd like to know the answer to that question as well. Pity the government doesn't have some scheme to help out in this regard.
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27-01-2017, 22:04   #4
luckylucky
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Just saw got these replies now
Quote:
Originally Posted by Poll Dubh View Post
The Gaeltacht still has areas where some of the community still speak Irish to each other but it is declining everywhere.
That's a crying shame, it really is. .
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigfellalixnaw View Post
I'd like to know the answer to that question as well. Pity the government doesn't have some scheme to help out in this regard.
I don't really know enough to comment what the government has or has not been doing, I reckon on nothing much beyond tokenism but I hope I'm wrong. What I do know is back when I was a kid was the horrendous way Irish was taught at school, it caused me and most others to resent it. I gather part of the Basque's language revival is the fun way it's taught, as us Irish and Basque feel a sense of connectedness maybe we could learn from them.

Personally it looks like I'm off abroad again in a few months as got a fairly decent job offer which I can't afford to turn down. Not sure if I'll ever get to learn it to a decent level personally but hope it does get to the stage one day where there are places beyond the Gaeltacht where Irish can be heard regularly again on the street.
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27-01-2017, 22:06   #5
PeadarK
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If you want to pick up the basics again, the app duolingo is actually really good for that!
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27-01-2017, 23:00   #6
nihicib2
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I live and work in Gaoth Dobhair in North West Donegal , a Gaeltacht area, and I know Im lucky that I'm able to do both as many of the people I grew up with are living and working elsewhere, either by choice or necessity. I was always a home bird and therefore it never bothered me to stay, it is, in my biased opinion the most beautiful place in the world (do a search on Google images ). But its not for everyone, Gaoth Dobhair like many other rural areas has been hit hard and hotels, banks and many businesses have gone to the wall over the years.

I guess like most young people these days the children and teenagers here are influenced by what they see on that tiny screen on their phone, and image and 'fitting in' is almost the most important part of their lives. Although they are educated through Gaeilge from primary school through to secondary school, the language is just not important to many of them, or their parents. And yes I agree that the education system (not the teachers, well not all ) and the way Gaeilge is laid out in the curriculum has a lot to be desired.

The language is just not seen as important, relevant or of worth to many. And I can understand that, but to me its a huge part of my identity, I speak Gaeilge every single day to almost everyone I know, and before someones jumps in, many of my friends who have moved to the area don't speak Gaeilge, and it bothers me not a bit. They just have to understand that when I'm in the pub and if the majority of the gang are Gaeilge speakers then we speak in Gaeilge, not because we are rude or trying to ostracise them. Its just that I feel really, really weird speaking english to someone Ive spoken Gaeilge to all my life and its just a natural thing in my brain to converse with them in the language Im most comfortable with.

It makes me really uncomfortable when people try and shove Gaeilge down peoples throats, to me its more about enticing people to the beauty of the language rather than beating it into people or berating people because they cant speak it or looking down your nose because people may speak badly of it (or speak it badly).

I would love to see a time come where the stigma attached to the language is gone and people see it as a beautiful part of our national and cultural identity.

It does make me sad to see the decline and I know Im as much to blame as the next person, I'm fluent but my grandfather had a richness and wealth of words that are slowly being forgotten, words that were connected to the land and weather and nature and a million other natural things. But I guess that can be said with most languages.

Sorry for the big long rambling post, I guess I just wanted to show a different side to the language I love, it's just a personal opinion on what it means to me, and to be honest I could write a thousand thousand other words on this subject but I wouldn't bore ye. It is part of me, Im part of it. I have no interest in trying to persuade other people to learn it but if you do then I thank you because we need all the help we can get. And you might discover a whole new life outside of the english speaking world (mostly a late night sing song, and lock ins, but hey every little helps )
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27-01-2017, 23:35   #7
luckylucky
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You certainly didn't bore me. Great post imo and I agree with all you said. I think you are dead right to speak Gaeilge all the time when they are mixed Irish and English speakers, doing these type of things is the only way it will survive in the Gaeltacht. I wouldn't say it's being rude at all - it's cultural survivalism.

You mention about needing all the help you can get, we speak about Irish all the time, but there's a broader Gaelic family out there in Scottish and Manx Gaelic, building stronger connections would be mutually beneficial I'd imagine - after all the languages are very closely related and share similar struggles.

As for young people 'fitting in' I understand that, only wish they'd realise that having your own language is actually cool and it's something you really realise when you spend a lot of time outside of Ireland and are constantly mistaken for British or American as it's always obvious that you're an English speaker but not at all obvious that you're Irish. It would be cool to be able to turn around to a fellow Irish person when abroad and switch from speaking English to Irish, when all most of us can manage are a few sentences at best.
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16-02-2017, 23:18   #8
whiterun
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I don't think that Irish is dying as much as you say it is. There's few people who speak it daily, but there's still plenty of people who're able to least understand it.
Also as a young dropout of school, I've had very little education on the subject, which makes me just want to learn it all the more. I'd love to be able to speak to my family in Irish when we're abroad. It is a very useful skill!
I think if you want to speak Irish more, ask your friends to initiate more Irish talks with you. Or if that's not possible, then go out and find people who're willing to talk with you daily in Irish.

I'm trying to learn Irish, it's my second day in trying, and yet I was able to manage to find people who speak Irish on a daily basis and even though I don't understand them I realise that the support is there for when I'm able to understand.
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27-03-2017, 01:29   #9
LeinsterDub
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Cá bhfuil tú i do gcónaí? Bíonn an pop thuas gaelictacht an craic ar fad

What part of the country are you? The pop up gaelictacht is great craic

https://m.facebook.com/profile.php?id=936562433116447
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