Cultural Region - Language - The Gaeltacht, Ireland

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Notes on the Linguistic Region of the Gaeltacht, Ireland

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Cultural Regions 

Language based regions

The Gaeltacht Region, Ireland

A region where people share a specific language, religion and/or a way of life is a cultural region

Gaeltacht

-A region in Ireland that can be defined by language-Over 80% of people living in those regions speak Gaeilge-There are 8 Gaeltacht regions-Almost 92'000 people are living in Gaeltacht areas     -Figure from 2006

-Gaeltachts are found in Donegal, Mayo, Connemara, Kerry, Cork and Waterford-A Gaeltacht was created in Co.Meath in the 1930's-100 families were brought from Galway to Meath-They were given 80 acres on the promise they would use Gaeilge as their every day language-They were given land in the towns of Rath Carn or Baile Ghib-There was tension between them and the Meath locals

Gaeltacht Areas

Decline of Gaeilge

-Gaeilge began declining in the 1840's during the famine - death and emmigration-When Britain was in charge of Ireland Gaeilge was prohibited-It survived only in remote areas especially on the west coast

Regrowth of Gaeilge

-1920's Irish Free State were supportive of Gaeilge-Irish is Ireland's official language as well as English-Free State made Irish compulsory in first and second level education-All civil servants were made to be competent in Irish - this has been phased out

The Government and Gaeilge

-The department in charge of the Gaeltacht keeps changing but currently is the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht-Gaelterra Eireann looks after employment in the Gaeltacht-Údarás na Gaeltachta promotes social and economic schemes in the region-The Gaelteacht's primary economic sources are its language courses run throughout the year-Gaelscoileanna across Ireland teach children through Irish 

Media as Gaeilge

-Rádió na Gaeltachta is based in Connemara it provides Irish listening to Gaeltacht communities-Rádió na Life is Dublin based and provides a limited service through Irish

Radio

Television

-TG4 (previously T na G) was set up in 1996 in Connemara-It's main purpose is to promote Gaeilge in the Gaeltacht and throughout Ireland

Publications

-Lá, Nós, Foinse/Seachtain

Protection of the Gaeltacht

-If too many people within a Gaeltacht are found speaking English it may lose its Gaeltacht status eg. Baile Ghib, Meath-There are strict planning guidelines to protect the Gaeltacht areas

The use of Gaeilge has increased in recent years, more people now speak Gaeilge than in famine times

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