Globalisation Effects on the Irish language and Identity

There is no denying it that globalisation has affected our world in more ways than one. This can be seen in the way we do business and the way we communicate as normal people are being exposed to new cultural ideas from countries that were once far away, but now seem as close as ever because of air travel and mass communications. While globalisation can be regarded as the process of international integration involving businesses or organizations, this interchange of world views, cultures, and ideas has had an effect on minority languages such as Irish. On one side of the discussion, globalisation is positively affecting the Irish identity and languages, and on the opposite side, there are those that feel globalisation is negatively impacting the Irish identity and language.

Positive Effects

  • Globalisation has allowed the Irish language and identity to spread on a global scale. This can be seen in China at the Beijing foreign studies university where they have been committed to developing a multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary Irish Studies programme. The university enrolls students biannually in Irish literatures, history, politics and offers a one year Irish language course at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels

  • Technology which is one of the main forces behind globalisation has contributed enormously to the globalisation of the Irish language and identity as the internet provides and allows foreign and Irish identities from all over the world the chance to learn the language online on websites such as dulingo and ranganna.com

Negative Effects

  • The biggest altercation is that globalization and the dominance of languages  such as English, Spanish and Chinese will force some minority languages such as Irish into extinction as we stand to lose half the world's languages in the next couple of decades

  • Negative impacts on language learning and education of the Irish language as widely spoken languages like English, Spanish and Chinese avails these people to be more connected

  • Irish dialects such as Munster Irish, Connacht Irish and Ulster Irish are distinct dialects of Gaeltacht regions, but they are dying out because cultural globalization tends to destroy any national community’s efforts to maintain its distinctness 

  • The Irish identity is deteriorating because our language plays a role in part of our identity but it is endangered    

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Tags: Globalisation, Globalization, Irish, identity, langauge

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Comment by DJ Flynn on August 30, 2018 at 4:13pm

Thank you for your response. The British are responsible in a way for the decline of the Irish language but i feel in today's world the forces of globalisation are not helping the Irish language. As the sheer force of cultural globalisation tends to destroy any efforts of the national commuinty to maintain its distinctiveness. I agree the government have been doing there best but i feel they could contributed more as studies were carried out showing that English monolingual speakers are posing a serious threat towards Gaeltacht regions. As a result gaeltacht regions are in decline. Irish is still compulsory in schools but there have been efforts to change this. More people speak English here though than Irish

Comment by Madeleine Lynn on August 30, 2018 at 3:04pm

Thanks for this interesting post! However, surely the British are largely responsible for the decline of the Irish language. Ireland was under British rule for hundreds of years and I believe English became the dominant language sometime in the 19th century. Ever since independence, the government of the Republic of Ireland has been doing its best to revive the language--isn't it still compulsory in most schools?--but most people are learning it as a second language and speak English at home.    

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