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Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!

Aodh 23 Jun 02 - 04:42 PM
RichM 23 Jun 02 - 06:48 PM
Malcolm Douglas 23 Jun 02 - 07:39 PM
Haruo 23 Jun 02 - 07:46 PM
Percustard 23 Jun 02 - 07:59 PM
McGrath of Harlow 23 Jun 02 - 08:06 PM
Percustard 23 Jun 02 - 08:12 PM
Willie-O 23 Jun 02 - 08:28 PM
GUEST,ozmacca 23 Jun 02 - 08:29 PM
toadfrog 23 Jun 02 - 08:40 PM
Percustard 23 Jun 02 - 09:00 PM
toadfrog 23 Jun 02 - 09:42 PM
Malcolm Douglas 23 Jun 02 - 09:50 PM
GUEST,ozmacca 23 Jun 02 - 10:04 PM
GUEST,Mikey joe 24 Jun 02 - 06:36 AM
greg stephens 24 Jun 02 - 07:39 AM
GUEST,Blessed are the Cheesemakers 24 Jun 02 - 08:24 AM
Fiolar 24 Jun 02 - 09:23 AM
greg stephens 24 Jun 02 - 09:48 AM
Malcolm Douglas 24 Jun 02 - 10:10 AM
Fiolar 24 Jun 02 - 10:10 AM
PeteBoom 24 Jun 02 - 11:00 AM
little john cameron 24 Jun 02 - 12:33 PM
GUEST,Philippa 24 Jun 02 - 03:45 PM
GUEST,Philippa 24 Jun 02 - 03:47 PM
Malcolm Douglas 24 Jun 02 - 04:08 PM
PeteBoom 24 Jun 02 - 04:17 PM
lady penelope 24 Jun 02 - 05:51 PM
GUEST,ozmacca 24 Jun 02 - 07:02 PM
Fiolar 25 Jun 02 - 09:19 AM
sheila 25 Jun 02 - 09:27 AM
Orac 25 Jun 02 - 10:05 AM
greg stephens 25 Jun 02 - 10:06 AM
greg stephens 25 Jun 02 - 10:41 AM
Orac 25 Jun 02 - 10:59 AM
Teribus 25 Jun 02 - 11:43 AM
GUEST,Philippa 25 Jun 02 - 11:54 AM
greg stephens 25 Jun 02 - 12:01 PM
Leeder 25 Jun 02 - 12:19 PM
sheila 25 Jun 02 - 02:20 PM
sheila 25 Jun 02 - 02:21 PM
Celtic Soul 25 Jun 02 - 07:40 PM
GUEST,ozmacca 25 Jun 02 - 07:56 PM
Big John 25 Jun 02 - 08:08 PM
Big John 25 Jun 02 - 08:26 PM
GUEST,Philippa 28 Jun 02 - 03:25 PM
weepiper 29 Jun 02 - 02:50 PM
sheila 29 Jun 02 - 09:36 PM
Aodh 30 Jun 02 - 06:22 PM
GUEST 01 Jul 02 - 01:50 PM
John MacKenzie 01 Jul 02 - 05:43 PM
Fiolar 02 Jul 02 - 09:19 AM
PeteBoom 02 Jul 02 - 09:26 AM
sian, west wales 04 Jul 02 - 05:42 AM
GUEST,heinrich 09 Sep 02 - 04:52 AM
GUEST,heinrich 09 Sep 02 - 05:10 AM
ard mhacha 09 Sep 02 - 06:14 AM
GUEST,Ceejay 09 Sep 02 - 11:42 AM
Jim McLean 09 Sep 02 - 12:07 PM
Peg 09 Sep 02 - 01:33 PM
GUEST,Boab 10 Sep 02 - 03:08 AM
GUEST,Diva 10 Sep 02 - 03:13 PM
Jim McLean 10 Sep 02 - 05:13 PM
GUEST,sorefingers 10 Sep 02 - 09:26 PM
mack/misophist 10 Sep 02 - 11:13 PM
Teribus 11 Sep 02 - 02:46 AM
Mudlark 11 Sep 02 - 02:51 AM
GUEST,sorefingers 12 Sep 02 - 05:45 PM
Malcolm Douglas 12 Sep 02 - 08:35 PM
Chanteyranger 12 Sep 02 - 11:54 PM
Haruo 13 Sep 02 - 12:03 AM
Teribus 13 Sep 02 - 04:20 AM
Jim McLean 13 Sep 02 - 04:28 AM
ard mhacha 13 Sep 02 - 01:53 PM
Airto 13 Sep 02 - 02:19 PM
GUEST,Boab 13 Sep 02 - 02:25 PM
GUEST,sorefingers 13 Sep 02 - 06:25 PM
Teribus 16 Sep 02 - 07:27 AM
Maurice Mann 16 Sep 02 - 08:24 AM
Teribus 16 Sep 02 - 08:33 AM
Aodh 23 Dec 02 - 03:05 PM
George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca 23 Dec 02 - 06:45 PM
GUEST,Sandy McLean 23 Dec 02 - 07:55 PM
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Subject: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Aodh
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 04:42 PM

Not long ago, Philippa asked a question about Scots Gaelic culture and how Irish Gaelic songs seem to be more accesible then Scottish. I would like to put this question to the Forum, just to see what answers I get.

1) How does the world preceive Scotland and its Gaelic culture?

2) Is there something about Scots Gaelic that makes it less accesible, or acceptable than Irish?

I would just like to know other peoples oppinions and thoughts on this.

But as they say; "Is fhearr aon chomhairle bho Dhia na dha dhiag bho dhaoine"

Slan leat

Aodh


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: RichM
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 06:48 PM

it's up to the Scots to determine how they want to be perceived by outsiders...maybe they aren't really concerned about it? And, perhaps they don't need to be?
Rich McCarthy

(an irish name for sure, but I do have as much Scot blood as Irish...it's the natural result of immigration of many peoples to Canada; maybe it's the ultimate solution to all national rivalries? ie, intermarriage...)


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 07:39 PM

Irish music (and therefore, by extension, Irish Gaelic music) is, at present, fashionable, though it does seem that many of the people coming here wanting information about it are asking for "phonetic transcriptions" so that they can sing the songs without having to make any personal effort to learn even the basics of the language. Scottish Gaelic music is rather less fashionable. I suspect that this disparity may in part be laid at the door of such as Clannad, who have been pioneers of the romantic, swirly, "Neo-Celtic Twilight", "Easy Listening" stuff. Scottish Gaelic Revival performers tend to go for a less affected style which appeals less to the "Celtoids", requiring perhaps a little more effort on the part of the listener.

I really do think that it's mostly the result of marketing strategies. Having said that, it probably took Scottish Gaelic singers longer to get out from under the thumb of the Mod style, with its strict prescriptions, than it did for their Irish colleagues to free themselves from the equally stultifying grip of Comhaltas. It's a pity that quite exciting (and potentially fashionable) bands like Runrig and MouthMusic tended to use less and less Gaelic material as they became more successful.

There is also the point that international audiences will probably assume that everything Gaelic is Irish, anyway; I don't know what we can do to combat simple ignorance of that kind. It seems to be almost universal.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Haruo
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 07:46 PM

Imagine how the Manx feel (even though their brand is orthographically less daunting than either bigger sibling's)!

Líolaind
who once knew a lass in Stornoway...


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Percustard
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 07:59 PM

hi all,

Mark Campbell here...

I prefer the Scots Gaelic (coincidentally). Linguistically and generally.

My Mum's a Toohey however!

Anyway, my band Tursacan performs quite a few Scots Gaelic songs in contemporary arrangements.

We'd sure like to know of any Scot's Gaelic tunes that have "sprouted" Australian songs down here in The Antipodes.

That's our present project, a genealogy on songs from Scotalnd, Ireland, Wales, Manx etc.

So, does anyone know a Scot's Gaelic song that has a variant in Australian English?

Hope to hear from you soon.

Mark (bury the hatchet) Campbell.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 08:06 PM

I think it's maybe largely down to the fact that (most of) Ireland has been an independent nation for a good few years, with an official status for the Irish throughout.

That's had a downside as well, but it means for example that there's some acquaintance with the language for everyone who's been through the school system.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Percustard
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 08:12 PM

If East Timor can make it to nationstate I reckon Scotland should too!


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Willie-O
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 08:28 PM

Interesting point McGrath.

Fact is, when you start referring to "Gaelic" as a cultural touchstone, the fact is that mass culture (aka "the world") simply does NOT think of Scotland in that way--let alone Man, Wales, Brittany or Galicia.

Hell, most of 'em think England is a Celtic nation, if they think about it at all.

It's not really a negative on Scotland or the other Celtic nations, it's that Ireland has been so successful at defining itself as such, and it has the reputation of being where the culture is alive in every little village, peat bog and pub.

Whereas the mass perception of Scotland is more along the lines of foggy moors, golf, ceremonial rather than everyday versions of the music and dress, and the Gaelic language aspect is very much a fringe thing thought to be preserved in the Hebrides and a few other islands and geographic edges.

And ultimately it probably has a hell of a lot do with the land ownership patterns of ridiculously huge estates owned by people who don't deserve them.

Bill Cameron (OK Mark, lets consider the hatchet buried).


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,ozmacca
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 08:29 PM

It's my belief that the more recent ( say, last 75 years)general discreditation of scots gaelic, doric scots, "braid" scots and other scottish pronunciations of english, in all their various dialects and variations, can be laid firmly at the door of the music-hall comics like Harry Lauder and Will Fyfe. Their stage, sound and screen characters played up to the common misconceptions of the scots as drunken, miserly buffoons, and used their languages to do it. This reinforced the attitude that the scot, speaking his own tongue, was to be ridiculed and could be regarded as a laughing stock, purely because of his speech.

All these popular beliefs were, and are today, simply part and parcel of the disdain in which the english held the scots, the like of which was made very evident at the time of the Union of the Parliaments, and which has been encouraged by authority ever since. It was a long-time deliberate policy of the government, from the early 18th century, to destroy and root out the use of all the tongues which were not "normal" english, and in my schooldays, it was still normal for a teacher to punish a child who made the mistake of using a scottish word in class, although the same teacher would wax lyrical over the same word when reading poetry by Burns.

All that having been said, I enjoy the sound and the "taste" of all the scots dialects (even if I don't understand some of them!) None more so than the lilting gaelic, which I believe may be making a come-back partly at least to the resurgence of interest in the Irish language, and all the associated "celtic-ness" associated with it. If the rise of popularity of the Irish gaelic helps revive positive interest in the scots as well, then I'd say it was a good thing, even if it did nothing else except make money for the Corrs!


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: toadfrog
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 08:40 PM

I don't think that Doric Scots is one bit discredited. It is a great tradition. And has nothing that I can see in common with "Gaelic." Nor do I see anything wrong with Harry Lauder. Or music hall comics. I like a lot of their stuff. So far as I can see, what really discedits Gaelic is the repetitious, monotonous dance tunes that are so popular, and so damn boring.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Percustard
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 09:00 PM

Hey Toadfrog,

Boring music is more a product of the performer than the tunes used!

My band Tursacan's Gaelic songs are done in a contemporary manner, use didgeridoo (we are from Australia) and we make connections (song wise) between Australia and Scotland, Man, Wales, Brittany, Galicia, and Ireland.

Our songs "aint" boring, indeed, rhythmically and melodically, many gaelic tunes, "celtic" tunes are very stimulating.

Its all in the arrangement and in the PR.

And I really think that using Scots accents as a joke is quite an insult.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: toadfrog
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 09:42 PM

Harry Lauder was a Scot, after all. He used an "accent" rather than broad Scots, because there was a limited audience for humor that only a few people could understand. I suppose in Britain the use of accents in making jokes could be taken as an insult because accents denoted class, and broad Scots denoted lower class. It depends a bit on the joke. And it also depends on whether an individual feels he/she is being insulted.

I suspect Gaelic tunes done in a traditional way could be extremely stimulating, if anyone took the trouble to learn and understand it. Generally, the stuff you describe sounds like the kind of Kraft processed cheese that passes for "folk music" any more. Thanks but no thanks.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 09:50 PM

I don't believe for a moment that the discouragement of Scottish dialects in schools was the result of some heinous plot by the "Wicked English"; this is largely another Old Wives Tale concocted by people generations removed from the mother country who love to believe that their ancestors were persecuted by a convenient external enemy. To the contrary; the speaking of non-standard English (by which I mean dialectal forms, not accent) in schools in Scotland was discouraged (often by quite severe punishment) by Scottish teachers for the perceived good of the children. In those days, anybody who was not able easily to make themselves understood outside the area where they were born and bred simply was not going to "get on" in the world.

For precisely the same reasons, the speaking of Gaelic in school was discouraged, and punished, by teachers who were, as often as not, themselves speakers of the language. They wanted the children to have all the advantages that a command of the majority language would entail; it was seen as necessary that they become accustomed to communicating fluently in English while at school; what they did at home was their own business.

More exactly, perhaps, their family's business. I've known a good few people whose grandparents spoke Gaelic, but only amongst themselves, and whose parents understood it but did not speak it. Again, the wish to give the children the best possible start in life, and not to burden them with the "yokel" image that had been attached to the Gaelic speaker in Scotland for several hundred years; not, I reiterate, by some imagined English Oppressor, but by the majority of Scots.

Thankfully, those attitudes have changed considerably in our lifetime; bi-lingualism (not just Gaelic-English, but also Scots-English, and, for that matter, Yorkshire-English, Devon-English and so on) is now seen as not only perfectly manageable but desirable; provided the child is able fluently to communicate in situations outside his or her immediate cultural milieu, the retention of regional modes -or an additional language, whether mother-tongue or secondary- is considered, as it ought to be, as culturally enriching; a thing to be encouraged and, indeed, supported by grant-aid in many cases.

The fact that Gaelic is a compulsory subject in Irish schools (while it is not in Scotland) is not, I think, relevant to the way Gaelic culture is perceived in other parts of the world. All too many Irish children resent the Irish language classes (and forget what they have learned as soon as they leave), just as their parents saw Irish music as old-fashioned and boring, preferring American-style pop music or Country-and-Western; which, despite what the tourist boards would have us believe, is still far more popular in Ireland than is native Irish music.

Ultimately, the foreign perception of Ireland as a country "where the culture is alive in every little village, peat bog and pub" is quite as false as the perception of Scotland as a country of kilts, bagpipes, tartan and shortbread; Scotland was unfortunate enough to define itself for the tourist trade in a more crass time, and an image like that is pretty hard to shake off. It is to be hoped, though, that it will in time be achieved, and that the Gaelic part of Scotland's culture will be given its due. How that may be done, given the frankly bizarre notions that even otherwise well-balanced people seem to have concerning things "Celtic", I cannot well imagine.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,ozmacca
Date: 23 Jun 02 - 10:04 PM

Don't get me wrong, toadfrog, I do like a lot of the material that Harry Lauder and others of that ilk produced. Some of it was, and is, excruciatingly funny. Trouble is, those caricatures were accepted as gospel truth to support denigratory attitudes about everything that was north of the border. Not H. Lauder & Co's fault as such, but definitely as a result of their deliberate lampooning of the subject. There were a lot of comics around who played on local dialects, welsh, irish and english, but it's the caricatures presented by the scots that seem to have stuck. I don't know what they could have done to stop it, but they certainly made the most of the popularity it brought them, and didn't do too much to set matters right.

While I don't, unfortunately, "have" the gaelic, I like to hear it spoken - and sung. I also like the scots dialects in all variants being spoken (and written too - if it serves to make a point, or if it is written and can be accepted purely out of good natured humour rather than as a vicious attack). There is a connection between the gaelic and the doric, by the way. They are both spoken by scots. As ever, where we scots tend to fall down is in finding ways to divide ourselves - this time over the native tongues. Most scots are natural "folkies" in that they must all have their minority opinions! (That was intended to be a joke, but thinking about it, I'm not so sure....) The majority of ordinary folk just keep using the language they grew up with, and enjoy using and playing with it. Meanwhile the activistic among us jump up down to bring everyone's attention to the "correct" way to use and preserve the old language as if this sacred heritage was too valuable for everyday use.

Now, I like using the version of broad scots that I grew up with, and I also like being able to subtly alter intonations, along with their verbal - and visual -attitudes so that the statements being made are emphasised or lightened. It's a great wordplay tool in story-telling for an audience prepared to actually listen, and in everyday conversation as well. And, perhaps most importantly, the scots dialects work best in performing songs that are built around them. Try doing almost any of the rowdier scots songs in BBC english and see where it gets you.... or some of the love songs come to that.....

Enough.... doon aff ra soap-box.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Mikey joe
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 06:36 AM

Could it be that the gaelic speaking areas in Scotland are also largely populated by "Wee frees". IMHO everyone is entitled to their own religion and oipinion but I wonder if people associate the two and link gaelic speaking with strict religious conservatism??

just a thought

Mj


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: greg stephens
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 07:39 AM

Mikey jo undoubtedly has a point. Public perceptions of Irish speaking people is undoubtedly largely positve....wisely connected with the old days, craic, pipes and bodhrans(OK not alwys positive!!), red hair and freckles, taking the fishing boats out from the Arran Islands blah blah blah. Whereas the first "fact" to spring to many people's mind about Scottish gaelic speakers might well be chaining up the swings in playgrounds on Sundays to stop the kids having fun. Unfair, maybe, but stereotypes do exist in people's minds and it's as well to recognise them if you want to change them.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Blessed are the Cheesemakers
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 08:24 AM

Kraft indeed.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Fiolar
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 09:23 AM

Disagree with Malcolm Douglas in some aspects. Forbidding the use of a a country's native language in schools is the first step towards the "conversion" of the young to the governing authority. "Teachers" did it because by and large they did not belong to the native population. It's the old familiar pattern which has been followed by generations of conquering powers and not just in Ireland and Scotland. The phrase "gan teanga, gan tir" ("without a language, without a country") is as true today as it has ever been. In "Mo Sgeal Fein", Father Peter O'Leary sums the whole thing up very nicely.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: greg stephens
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 09:48 AM

So, Fiolar, Scottish teachers weree by and large not Scottish. Care to tell us where you got this extraordinary, and on the face of it unbelievable, piece of information? Scotland has a long and distiguished educational history,and I for one do not believe it achieved that by importing the majority of its teachers from abroad.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 10:10 AM

Perhaps Fiolar means that many teachers were from Mainland Scotland and did not themselves speak Gaelic, which is certainly true; though it is equally true that many did have that language. The proscription of Gaelic in the wake of the final Jacobite rebellion was a brief over-reaction to an attempted coup d'état, and was repealed once the immediate danger was over. It doesn't have much bearing on policies in Primary education in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries; Gaelic in Scotland represented no threat of any kind, except to monoglot speakers of it whose employment opportunities would be severely retricted if they were unable to communicate effectively in the official, majority language of their country.

While, with hindsight, the heavy-handed and unimaginative methods employed by many teachers in the past are to be deplored, the fact remains that their motive will in the main have been altruistic; I would not subscribe to a conspiracy theory in this case. The situation in Ireland was quite different and not, I think, comparable; though of that I know little.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Fiolar
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 10:10 AM

I didn't say that. Many of the "native" teachers were in fact trained in colleges which did not teach the tongue of the majority of the population. It happened in Ireland and I have no doubt the same thing happened in many other countries. English became the accepted language and many parents had little option but to go along with that fact.In passsing (with regard to Ireland) the whole subject of the decline of the Irish language is covered in depth in the book "Irish Dialects and Irish-Speaking Districts" by Brian O Cuiv published in 1980.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: PeteBoom
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 11:00 AM

Aodh - you've raised a pair of interesting questions...

1) How does the world preceive Scotland and its Gaelic culture?

2) Is there something about Scots Gaelic that makes it less accesible, or acceptable than Irish?

I think that "perceive" is the key here. Perception is everything. No? In the States, where I am basing my answer from, rather few people recognize Scotland as having a Gaelic culture at all.

As far as Scots Gaelic goes, I'm putting on my "former member of ACG" hat - there are some significant barriers in place to Scots Gaelic, many of which have been erected in a "we're not Irish" reaction. While I can think of a few folk in my area who are at least modestly fluent in Irish (mine left me long ago - from lack of use) there are NONE that I know of that are native speakers.

When I got to learning Scots Gaelic I found it was an entirely different story. I could count on one hand the number of people in my area - meaning a couple of hours drive - with a reasonable command of the language, and have 5 fingers left over.

Mind you, it has taken a long time to overcome the idea that Celtic IS Irish, and to branch the identity of Celtic (and Gaelic) out to include Scots and Welsh has been a long fight. To include the Manx, and anyone else, in the general population's view may take a much longer time.

The number of native (Scots) Gaelic speakers who emigrated to America was, I believe, much smaller than the number who emigrated to Canada - Nova Scotia and Eastern Ontario particularly. Thus, in some places, eg., Glengarry County, Ontario, you have a CHANCE of encountering someone with Gaelic, it is not terribly likely. You are, however, far more likely to find a Gaelic speaker there than say, in Alma, Michigan. For all the tourist stuff put up on Nova Scotia, the odds of finding someone comfortable with Gaelic, excluding the odd phrase or two, are not nil, but not much greater. (Though they are better than in Glengarry Co.)

To blame the decline of the language on the educational system is to put too much credit there. There have been MANY factors contributing. The fact is, Gaelic, Scots Gaelic in particular, has been in a long, slow decline since well before Culloden.

Grampian TV (if I remember right) did a three part series called "The Blood is Strong" some time ago. It is a little dated, done before the bridge to Skye was started, but the ideas are generally pretty good.

Cheers -

Pete


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: little john cameron
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 12:33 PM

Here is a bit about the how and why of the demise of Gaelic in Scotland.However,there has been an upsurge of interest in Gaelic in the last few years.Many schools in Scotland now have Gaelic included in their curriculum.
Gaelic discouraged


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 03:45 PM

I think that many of the difficulties that the rest of you have pointed out in regard to Scotland in general and Gaelic Scotland in particular - such as the "Celtic Twilight" and "stage Irish/Highland/Scot" syndromes and the repression of vernacular languages and dialects.

In regard to perceptions of Irish music abroad, I've heard Irish traditional performers - including members of Altan if my memory is correct - tell stories of playing in America to people who had completely different expectations of what they should be listening to, people who asked for songs like "Irish Eyes are Smiling" There is a song - search the Mudcat archives for the full lyrics - by Robbie O'Connell called "You're not Irish" which tells the story:
When first I came to the USA with my guitar in hand
I was told that I could get a job singing songs from Ireland
So I headed up to Boston, I was sure to be alright>br> But the very first night I got on the stage,
I was in for a big surprise
they said;

Your're not Irish, you can't be Irish, you don't know Danny Boy
Or toora loora loora, or even Irish eyes
You've got the hell of a nerve to say you came from Ireland
So cut out all the nonsense and sing McNamara's Band.

Aodh (and of possible interest to others who speak or are learning Gaelic)- Brian and I tried to answer your questions if you want to refresh the "Chead Mhairt" thread. And please have a look at An Bhean Eudach / Thig am Bàta in case you can assist with that thread.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 03:47 PM

(I wrote most of the following off-line before I read the last few of the above threads, so please excuse repetition)

Well, Aodh, you've got your 12 (erring) advisors and a bit. I wonder if the original context of that saying was a comment on the decisions of courtroom juries? or could it refer to the 12 apostles?

My comment that inspired your questions had to do with the appreciation of songs in Irish and Scottish Gaelic outside the Gaelic-speaking community, and particularly outside of Ireland and Scotland. Irish musicians and Irish singers seem to be better marketed and to have a higher profile abroad than their Scottish counterparts. Or should I put it that there are more Irish musicians and singers who have a high international profile than there are Scottish musicians and singers?

I don't mean fame - though I could cite the example of a Moroccan saying to me "I love Irish music" and surprising me by meaning mainly the pop group U2, I mean a profile mainly among people who take an interest in the music categories called "traditional", "folk", "Ethnic" and "world music".

The profile of Irish folk groups and singers is such that we have had discussions on Mudcat about how a song can become perceived Irish simply because the Clancy Bros & T. Makem or the Dubliners recorded it - even if their source was another English-speaking (!) country.

There are well-known groups such as Clannad and Altan and Capercaillie who have a large repetoire of Gaelic song from Ireland and Scotland. But while there have been some Scottish groups like Ossian which included an occasional Gaelic song along with their tunes and songs in English, this is much more the norm in Ireland. The Clancy Bros & Makem, Mary O'Hara, Mary Black, and Dolores Keane have all recorded more than one song in Irish. Thus people who listen to these singers mainly for the English-language songs are exposed to the Irish-language songs. They all become aware of the language and some of them become strongly interested in (Irish) Gaelic song and then in the language itself. And while numbers of native Gaelic speakers are similar in both countries, because there are so many Irish people who speak Irish as a second language, it is usually easier to find someone to help people learn Irish abroad than to find someone to coach Gaelic learners. So while I agree with much that Malcolm Douglas has written I don't agree that "the fact that Gaelic is a compulsory subject in Irish schools ... is not ...relevant to the way Gaelic culture is perceived in other parts of the world."

There is no mystery about why more singers from Ireland sing in Gaelic than do singers from Scotland. Ireland is a more compact country than Scotland, Gaelic is more a national language, having formerly been spoken throughout the island. Gaelic was spoken in a larger area of Scotland than many people realise - and I was surprised to find native speakers still in large areas of rural mainland Locaber, Kintail and Sutherland. But it was never the language of ALL of Scotland. (there would not be the same interest within and outside Ireland in Hiberno-Irish and Ulster-Scots dialects of English as there is in the very distinctive Doric and Broad Scots) And while there now are only small pockets of the Ireland in which Irish Gaelic is the first language of most people, compared to Scotland these "Gaeltacht" areas are more geographically accessible to people throughout the rest of the country. Since the majority of the island became independant of the United Kingdom, the policy has been to teach Irish in all schools and to facilitate the use of Irish in the civil service and government. Although the policy has not been put into effect half as well as it should (especially in the latter regard), the fact is that most people know some Irish - often far more than they realize.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 04:08 PM

I take your point about Gaelic in Irish schools; that is an aspect which hadn't occurred to me.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: PeteBoom
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 04:17 PM

As one of the 12 erring advisors... I'm going to throw this bit in. In the States, my nearest Scots Gaelic study group was a 9 hour drive away (at an average of 70 mph...) One problem I saw with the Scots Gaelic advocates, including the US chapter of ACG, was they spent a LOT of time defining what they were NOT - not defining what they were.

Phillipa's point above is terribly relevant, regarding the proportion of population that spoke Gaelic in the first place.

When I began playing music in Michigan, there was one other band that played regularly. They played fairly strict traditional, and frankly did not play much. We tried to mix traditional tunes with the pub-rubbish beer-drinking sing-along stuff - and even THAT was radical! "Why does that song have the whisky in the jar?" I actually got asked that question once. How do you answer that? My favorite was being asked if I saw any leprechauns when I lived in Ireland... I said only after drinking my pay from playing in the bar.

It took nearly 10 years for the general populace here to accept that Scottish music and Irish music could be played by the same band. And it took nearly that long to show that there was much more to either than "rebel" or "Jacobite" songs. That there are scores of incredible songs that have nothing to do with "the cause" - whatever that cause may be.

I'm still working on getting people to realize that because an Irish band performed a song, it is not automatically Irish. My favorite was someone asking me if I knew the Irish song "The Drummerboy of Shiloh" and if I knew the story behind it. When I said "Yes, I knew the song. It is not Irish at all, it dates from the American civil war." They got upset - because Scartlaglen did it on a CD!

I'm not opposed to sneaking in the odd song in Gaelic, Irish or Scots Gaelic, I just get tired of explaining afterward that it is not a song in gibberish that has a good beat to it.

My goal is to get people interested in the real deal, not just kilts and bagpipes and shamrocks and the like - but to try and point them to where they can expand their mind.

Rant bit set to off.

Cheers -

Pete


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: lady penelope
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 05:51 PM

As the daughter of Glaswegian parents, born and raised in London, I think the main reason there is this peculiar notion of 'what is Scottish' exists because , unlike the Irish ( broad generalisms here ) the Scots didn't seem to take their whole culture with them where ever they went.

Now I know I'm going to get many examples of gatherings and games thrown at this but what I mean is the everyday stuff, not just big events.

In London, there is a huge Irish population and there has been for over a hundred years. There are also a very large number of Scots, but you wouldn't know it. There are any number of Irish pubs ( and I mean Irish pubs, not theme bars ) there used to be Irish working men's clubs. Kentish Town and Kilburn were pretty much Irish enclaves. But I've only ever known of one Scots pub. And that was very much of the "big screen TV for the footie, all lads together" kind of pub.

You always knew where to go to get your Irish dancing clothes and music. Which cafes did soda bread as standard and the catholic church I attended as a child rang with the voices of Eirinn. It was easy to find somewhere to learn Irish gaelic and then someone to use it with.

As a child, I knew there was a difference between the 'Scots' and 'Irish' languages, but I couldn't tell you what they were because none of my parents family could remember much. Apart from tidied up 'folk' songs, sung in an operatic style and forced onto unimpressed children.

I dare say it would be quite a different story from someone who grew up ( or whose parents grew up )outside of a large city in Scotland.

But I think it's this utter lack of knowledge about Scottish culture that is the real problem.

May be the Scottish are too reserved ***G***

TTFN M'Lady P.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,ozmacca
Date: 24 Jun 02 - 07:02 PM

Lady P, I agree thoroughly with your comments about the scots NOT taking their everyday culture with them. When we arrived in Downunderland 28 years ago the big scottish cultural event of the year in the area was the Caledonia Society Ball. Being newly arrived, we went.... I had never seen the like in Scotland! Debutantes in evening gowns led in by kilted young lads of the local pipe band, to the strained strains of "Amazing Grace" as a solo on the pipes. Dances like strip the willow and the eightsome reel to an accordian and drumkit, with clarinet lead.... every man-jack with any claim at all to being of scots descent wearing the pic-nic rug out of the car-boot.. I had never seen so much tartan in one place ever before! But these were all ordinary people, the plumbers and carpenters and bricklayers, not the classes with which we had associated this kind of activity back home.

It was all like this, wherever we went. There was no real knowledge of traditional or ordinary folk music, or the recent (at that time) folk revival in Scotland... and no great interest in it either. The mock-jock concept was firmly established alongside plastic-paddy. Fortunately, popular music and entertainment with the Clancy Brothers, and even things like Val Doonican and, later on, Riverdance, raised general interest and increased the awareness of "real" Irish musical culture. However, not much has penetrated the general mass perception of the kilts and haggis which represent Scotland.... yet. I just hope that popular groups like Battlefield who occassionally tour out here keep up the pressure, so that the local pro/amateur stuff becomes more appreciated.

The perception of what our culture, as has been pointed out, depends on what we (the scots emigrant - for whatever reason) took with us...... Which raises the question, why didn't we take the real thing with us? I submit that this is because we didn't see it as being of real value, having been educated to believe that the normal scot, and the normal everyday lifestyle, was only good to be laughed at. Whether evicted pennyless from the traditional territory on the orders of the chief, sent into slavery by an uncaring government, or simply driven away by economic necessity, it is hardly surprising that ordinary people wanted to forget the ordinary things of their old life which had brought misery. Is that one of the reasons why they so glamourised their own perceptions of "Here's tae us, wha's like us"?

However, it is heartening to see that there is a rising awareness of the "real" scots culture... even if we do get all uptight about it being painted blue in the face by Mel Gibson, and we still suffer the pipes and tartans of outrageous fortune at "Highland Gatherings".... One day, if we keep trying, we'll get it right. In the meantime, one of the best things we can do at the ordinary people level is to keep making "real" scots culture interesting, lively, and entertaining. The gaelic language and all the scots dialects and tongues are, as I have said before, useful tools. Let's recognise them as such, and make the effort to appreciate and encourage their use everyday. It isn't gpoing to happen overnight though. As a bloke who used to do Prime Minister impersonations down here once said, "Life wasn't meant to be easy."


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Fiolar
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 09:19 AM

Some very interesting points made in the above postings. I wonder if when the Scottish people left their homeland if they fitted in better initially than the Irish? The reason I say that is because I have never heard the phrase "No Scottish need Apply" unlike the one "No Irish Need Apply" (covered in the song). Believe it or not it was used in London and other cities and the words "No Irish, Coloured or Dogs" could be seen on many boarding houses. Funny enough I never came across any prejudice personally but then I was not a part of the "image" which many English had of the "Paddies" as boozing illiterates.
In passing it is worth pointing out that there are two folk groups - the Scottish one "Ossian" and the Irish on "Oisin." (pronounced "Ush-Sheen.")
By the way, I would reccomend a marvellous book by a Scotsman, Alexander Moffat entitled "The Sea Kindoms" which is the story of Celtic Britain & Ireland. Published in 2001 and ISBN is 0 00 257216 8. He covers many aspects of Scottish history which you won't find in the regular hisory books.
In regard to the extirpation of Irish in Ireland I quote from Brian O Cuiv's book: "..in 1534 the activities of Irish poets, historian and minstrels were regarded as a bad influence.. and evoked the following ordinance: 'that no Yrshe mynstrels, rymours, shannaghes, ne bardes, unchages, nor messangers, come to desire any goodes of any man dwellinge within the Inglyshrie, uppon peyne of forfayture of all theyr goodes, and theyr bodyes to prison.'"


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: sheila
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 09:27 AM

It's possible that some of the differences between Irish and Scottish immigrant experiences, may have to do with religion. The US was a largely Protestant nation - the majority of Scots immigrants were Protestant, and would have blended more easily into the dominant culture, while the majority of Irish immigrants were Catholic.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Orac
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 10:05 AM

Scotland is not exactly the same situation as Ireland. Dont forget that Gaelic was not native language to all of Scotland. Northumberland once stretched as far as Edinburgh and the lowland "Scots" accent as far as there is accually a modified Northumberland accent.(Some will dispute this of course). If we take the case of the Orkneys .. they once belonged to Norway and was "loaned" to England during the Tudor (I think) period because the King of Norway could not afford the dowry on his daughter with the intention that when he managed to cough up the 5000 quid or so he could have it back. (No doubt some historian out there will give the actual story) ... Anyway historically the native tongue there is Norwegian and never has been Gaelic.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: greg stephens
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 10:06 AM

Fiolar (and anyone else): very interesting thread. I would recommend a thoroughly interesting read which is excellent historical and archaeological background."Facing the Ocean: the Atlantic and its peoples" by Barry Cunliffe.Oxford University Press 2001.ISBN 0-19-924019-1.Starts from the year dot...written by a professor of archaeology with a big knowledge of related history. Calls into question a great many things we all tend to takefor granted if we were brought up on the historical theories of 100 years ago.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: greg stephens
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 10:41 AM

Fiolra quotes the anti-minstrel legislation of 1534 as evidence of some English hostility to Ireland. You can deduce that if you wish to see it in that light, but I would point out that theTudor monarchy was just as vigorous (if not more?) in extirpating the huge body of English minstrels, who were going full power in 1500 andreduced to aa few more-or-less beggars/buskers in 1600. I would regard both campaigns as part of the efforts of the monarchsof the time to establish (successfully).Just as the Planatagent monarchs of England moved against the Welsh bards in the 1400's, so did the Welsh Tudors move against the English minstrels in the 1500's. I don't seeit as some anti-Gaelic phenomenon....I doubt if the fat git Henry VIII gave a shit what language the peasants spoke, as long as noone rode around with a harp stirring them up to "disease and mischief"(I quote from an old edict).


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Orac
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 10:59 AM

Very true Greg. The Irish also choose to forget the miserable lives the poor had in England (in larger numbers) as if it was just they that suffered under greedy landowners. The folk songs may talk about "merry ploughboys" etc .. but how many were?


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Teribus
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 11:43 AM

One thing that tends to get overlooked when making comparisons between the Scots and the Irish and the carry over of culture is the outlook of those who emmigrated.

George Macdonald Fraser, in his book "The Steel Bonnets" says that it does not surprise him one jot, that the first human being to set foot on land outwith planet Earth was an Armstrong, or that the man who sent him there was a Nixon. He also points out that for the percentage make up of the peoples of the United States of America, there are a disproportionate number of Scots, or people of Scottish descent, in America's Hall of Fame.

The Reformation in Scotland in 1560 brought, among other things, access to education for all. The languages used in Scottish schools were Latin and English. By the time emmigration started on any sort of scale, the general population of Scotland was one of the most literate in Europe. Within that system, men of science, medicine, engineers and men of commerce were the most highly valued. Poets, musicians and artists were well regarded but few in number. Where and when they travelled, the emmigrant Scots tended to be forward looking, fully intent on making the best of the opportunities presented.

Starting during the reign of William IV and continuing through the reign of Queen Victoria, Scotland and things Scottish became increasingly "fashionable". The style adopted was firmly based on what was acceptable then. There were no "mock jocks" then - only in the continuation of that style are they viewed so now - and that is wrong, because they were the ones who built for Scotland and it's people, a reputation for honesty, hard-work and excellence.

So with regard to what is the "real thing" for the Scots, why shouldn't it be in pipe music, or in fiddle and accordian bands playing music to accompany traditional scottish dancing - just because it wasn't cool to city dwelling Scots while they were growing up does not necessarily make it pretentious or governed by class or position.

Ozmacca was surprised that;
"I had never seen so much tartan in one place ever before! But these were all ordinary people, the plumbers and carpenters and bricklayers, not the classes with which we had associated this kind of activity back home."

Well the case exactly as you saw it used to be the norm where I hailed from in Scotland Oz, dances and functions attended by plumbers, carpenters, bricklayers and mill workers - ordinary people.

Hogmanay in Scotland now is a party on Princess Street, with laid on entertainment. When I lived in Scotland the only entertainment laid on was laid on by ourselves. You entered houses first footing on the understanding that at one point you would have to entertain the company, either by song, dance, recitation or story - that's how a hell of a lot of the songs have survived and been carried forward - real traditional 'folk' songs, tunes and tales. Try to get that sort of evening going now and you'd be doomed to failure without microphones, amplifiers, backing tracks and a drum kit. Even if all those are available don't expect anyone to know any words - they don't matter any more, all that is required is mumbled moaning that is roughly in tune with the accomplished stuff they are thumping out on whatever bit of wood or plastic they are holding in their hands.

Aye, Laddie!! - The "Real Thing" !!!!! If that's it you are welcome to it.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 11:54 AM

Teribus wrote "Hogmanay in Scotland now is a party on Princess Street, with laid on entertainment." But in the Western Isles the season still is celebrated with oidhche callan and first footing. Aodh started this thread in response to my comments in the Oran na Politician thread that there is a very strong song tradition in Gaelic Scotland but that outside their homeland the Irish Gaelic songs have a much higher profile.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: greg stephens
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 12:01 PM

It is perhaps worth noting at this point that not all high-profile Irish Gaelic songs are quite what they seem. check out the Eriscay Love Lilt on many internet sites and you will find it is "Irish".


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Leeder
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 12:19 PM

The treatment of Scots Gaelic speakers in schools has resonance in Canada, in the treatment of First Nations children who were sent to residential schools, where their own language was forbidden, likely for roughly the same reasons as those of the teachers in Scotland. The fact that much physical and sexual abuse went on as well has raised this to a high-profile issue here, with massive lawsuits that threaten to bankrupt some of the churches which operated the schools. The cultural genocide issue tends to get shunted into the background.

Another interesting point in Canada is the success of Mary Jane Lamond, a singer who has made a career of popularizing songs in Cape Breton Scots Gaelic, despite the fact that she is not a native speaker, and learned the language in university. Apparently her pronunciation isn't all that good, in fact sometimes being incomprehensible to native speakers of the language in Scotland. (This from a review of one of her recordings, by Margaret Bennett in the Canadian Folk Music Bulletin.)


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: sheila
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 02:20 PM

Orac - check for the background on Orkney passing from Danish control to Scottish.

The language there was Norn, derived from old Norse.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: sheila
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 02:21 PM

Hmm.. the link I meant to send disappeared. http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,3604,652992,00.html


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Celtic Soul
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 07:40 PM

I'd have to second what Malcom said. Irish music and dance are the "fashionable" folk...for the moment. I had heard that Cuban music was making a play for that spot, however.

As for Scots Gaelic culture, music, and dance, from where I sit, I see quite a lot of recognition of it. There are more Scottish heritage festivals that I am aware of than Irish. I have never seen the Irish equivalent to Highland Games here in the States. And, Bagpipes are immediately recognizable as being Scottish, but how many people know what an uillean pipe is?


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,ozmacca
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 07:56 PM

Well, as the thread title says, " Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!" The perception by others of the scot and his culture is the heart of the matter.

Say "Irish" and the popular image a few years ago would be the drunken unwashed illiterate labourer, singing Danny Boy, and ready to punch out anybody who seemed to insult Guinness, Ould Ireland, the Pope, or the IRA. Thankfully that image has changed, due in no small part to the popularisation of irish music and pseudo-irish culture. This has also brought about some awareness of celt-icity, and all that entails, with mystic faerie and arthurian legend mixed up in the brew. However, there has been a revival of interest in "real" folk music and song as heard and sung by some geniuses and a lot of ordinary people in ordinary life, and about some extra-ordinary situations in the history of Ireland.

Now, a few years ago, if somebody said "scot" the popular image abroad would have been the dour hypocritic wowser, clad in a tweed jacket and kilt of dubious authenticity, playing the pipes while bemoaning the loss of a baw-bee, hunting a haggis, and getting maudlin-drunk on whisky on a Saturday night. This image is just as false as was that of the irishman, but in many cases it is still firmly held. I feel that in many cases we have actively encouraged it, partly because we ourselves can find it amusing, but also as a kind of defence derived from a sense of inferiority instilled into us... my, but we're a fine bundle of neurotic paranoia when we're abroad. My point about the scene here in Oz twenty-odd years ago was that ordinary scots in Scotland didn't have the same pressure to "tartanise" as they did overseas. Out here they did, and still do. The gaelic language is just one aspect of the whole thing. Because it was not being spoken much in Scotland for various reasons, scots abroad tended to lose it completely. For many years it was seen as an inferior language. You'd go a long way here to find many who speak gaelic, except for a very few. It is the other scots tongues that are heard, and instantly recogniseable - if not always comprehensible. The ordinary scot abroad is always immediately identified. Very few people mistake us for irish, and are usually gently corrected...... But the use of any distinctive language, and especially with the poetic potential of the scots dialects, is to be encouraged.

Teribus made the point that in his days in Scotland, entertainment was what the ordinary people made for themselves, and that today, this has largely disappeared. I agree completely. That was what gave us our "real" folk music over the centuries. The tendency to give that up in exchange for ready-made popular insta-stuff is lamentable, but surely our task is to try to put "good" "real" "folk" music before the public so that they get to see what it's like, and hopefully enjoy it. Educate the audiences, as many of the best names in folk music have always done. There was a lot of good stuff among the pseudo-irish material, and it made people aware. That's really what we need for scots material, but it isn't going to work if the majority still believe in the image of the laird in his argyle jacket, hairy sporran and kilt, jumping up and down on somebody's sword half way up a heather-clad hillside as depicted from the time of Victoria.

We have had a long and chequered history and there are any number of excellent writers of it, as well as brilliant musicians and singers who can provide the real stories from it. Let's emphasise that aspect and the dross will be sifted from the whole body of material which the music and tourism industries produces in their drive to make money.

I've just read what I've written.... Damn, but it sounds pompous. Doon aff ra box again........


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Big John
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 08:08 PM

I am probably schitsophrenic (who cares about the spelling) in that I play the guitar and sing Irish ballads and folk music but my chosen sport is Lawn Bowls which is a very British sport. Through that sport I have visited bowling clubs in Edinburgh and Glasgow, as well as several Welsh and English locations. (I will be visiting Glasgow next June for a week of Bowls). Music is my life but hospitality has an equal ranking. The hospitality and sharing of musical culture that I have experienced in Scotland leaves no doubt in my mind that the Scots are equal to the Irish in their love of music and tradition and their hospitality is second to none. I only skimmed through the previous entries. To those of you who feel that Scotland is lagging behind, don't worry, all the right things are alive and well and living throughout your brilliant country.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Big John
Date: 25 Jun 02 - 08:26 PM

Sorry. I have just read the previous entries and realised the thread is mainly to do with language. I was a product of a christian brothers school where they told us about how the English had beaten the english language into the Irish and they then proceeded to beat the Irish language into us. I, for one, have NO INTEREST in the Irish language and I prefer to communicate with people in the language I know best which happens to be English.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Philippa
Date: 28 Jun 02 - 03:25 PM

Séamus, who teaches geography and French at an Irish-medium secondary school (all subjects except English & French are taught through the medium of Irish) in Northern Ireland, told me of difficulty in finding Gaelic books in Edinburgh. Séamus went into Waterstones, a very large book shop centrally located in the capital city of Scotland. He asked the assistant where the Scottish Gaelic books were kept. She brought him to a section of Scottish literature and picked out a book of Robert Burns and asked him if that was the sort of thing he was looking for. Séamus explained again that he was looking for books in the Gaelic language. She said he should look upstairs in the "Foreign Language" section.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: weepiper
Date: 29 Jun 02 - 02:50 PM

Yes, very much pot luck finding Gaelic books. In Edinburgh the best place is James Thin's on South Bridge - it has a large academic section which has several shelves of Gaelic books because of the Celtic Department at the university. But most bookshops wouldn't have much.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: sheila
Date: 29 Jun 02 - 09:36 PM

weepiper - Now that James Thins has collapsed, we have to hope that the new owners will continue to stock those books.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Aodh
Date: 30 Jun 02 - 06:22 PM

Hi folks, and a big thank you all for taking the time to ponder and give your thoughts on the matter. It has given me a lot to think about, and I hope it has you as well.

Mile moran taing.

Aodh


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Jul 02 - 01:50 PM

Rant mode on.

The way Celtic Americans view Gaelic Scotland, Ireland, etc is no more or less realistic than the way that Italian Americans view Italy, German Americans view Germany, and African Americans view Africa.

To be as vicious about these sorts of idealized impressions people have of their ancestral homelands they never have seen just strikes me as the worst sort of begrudgery and ill temperedness.

People will never come to learn about the genuine article when their attempts to do so are viciously disparaged by people like Malcolm Douglas.

And just so you know Malcolm, you look every bit as foolish projecting your stereotypes about Americans and others with an affection for Celtic lands and peoples as any Oirish American I've ever seen.

As to the fashionability issue, I do believe it is true to a limited extent. But it also isn't true. This music has been kept alive by descendants of immigrants for generations in North America. There were many people involved in their Celtic American ancestral music communities performing and listening to Irish and Scots music long before it became fashionable. To suggest otherwise is pretty ignorant.

For the life of me, I will never understand the begrudgery natives have towards their exiles and emigres. It really is an ugly human trait.

Rant mode off.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 01 Jul 02 - 05:43 PM

Perhaps this song fits into this thread Nancy Nicholson
Failte.....Giok


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Fiolar
Date: 02 Jul 02 - 09:19 AM

It never ceases to amaze me how many folks whose grasp of history is poor or in some cases based on the "dramas" penned by the Bard of Avon, are prepared to make their prejudices known. For example last year in our local evening newspaper, one of the regular columnists had an item about Macbeth. In it he was described (and I quote) as a "power-crazed megalomanic nutter" and consumed by his own ambition and comparable to Adolf Hitler in those aspects. I dropped a letter explaining the true facts and I fully expected a host of replies from Scottish folks in support. Mine was the only one published. Not surprising I suppose as many people have no time for such things as history and I have met some who think "Bannockburn" was some thing one did with a cake; the "Yellow Ford" was the latest model car and "Hastings" a character in an Agatha Christie novel.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: PeteBoom
Date: 02 Jul 02 - 09:26 AM

True, Fiolar. However, I'd rather have them get their sense of history from that fellow from Avon than from Mickey Mouse. There is a difference between "spin" and "rubbish" (not much, but a difference.)

Pete


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: sian, west wales
Date: 04 Jul 02 - 05:42 AM

This thread reminded me of a book I had 'round the house, so I had a rummage and found it. "Scotch Reels: Scotland in Cinema and Television" (reels - get it?) is out of print, but an interesting collection of essays, kicked off by "Myths Against History: Tartanry and Kailyard in 19th-Century Scottish Literature" by Cairns Craig (where is he these days?) Other essays:

"From Scott-land to Disneyland", Murray Grigor
"Scotland and Cinema: The Iniquity of the Fathers", Colin McArthur
"Scottish Film Culture: A Chronicle", Jim Hickey "An Interview with Forsyth Hardy"
"Workers' Films: Scotland's Hidden Film Culture", Douglas Allen
"Scotland doesna mean much tae Glesca: Some Notes on The Gorbals Story", John Hill
"Scottish Television: What Would It Look Like?", John Caughie

All in all an interesting book and, considering how film and TV shape conceptions, relevant to this discussion. It was published in 1982 by the British Film Institute ISBN 0 85170 121 3. Perhaps available second-hand? It would also probably be in national libraries, and possibly outposts of BFI (and perhaps British Council?)

sian


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,heinrich
Date: 09 Sep 02 - 04:52 AM

Hey all,

thats a good point lads,

I'm 19 and from germany and I've been several times to the outer hebbrides(harris), edinburgh and glasgow... The opinion I got of Scotland is that the people there should be more aware of their culture and language which is gaelic... as some lad said on this page here gaelic is more spoken by the older people and the old celtic culture gets lost. The Gaelic culture is one of the last celtic cultures in europe and hopefully it will live on in you Scots as it did the last centuries. So I'd suggest to teach gaelic in school again...or to do anything else to keep the scottish gaelic alive.. like one guy here who is starting to make an overview of gaelic music.

but anyway scotland and its people is one of the worlds most beautiful places...


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,heinrich
Date: 09 Sep 02 - 05:10 AM

I forgot a point...

Wasnt it because of the English that the gaelic culture was pushed back ? I would see the revival of the caelic culture as a step to put back the English oppression.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: ard mhacha
Date: 09 Sep 02 - 06:14 AM

So many diverse opinions, mine for what it`s worth is for Scotland to grasp the bloody nettle and get of England`s coat-tails, A free Scotland is what is needed and then your culture will get the recognition it deserves. Ard Mhacha.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Ceejay
Date: 09 Sep 02 - 11:42 AM

I think its quite true that Scottish people themselves tended to undervalue the Gaelic side of their heritage up until recent years. I don't know why. The Irish too, undervalued their Gaelic heritage for many years to the point that the traditional music was hardly acknowledged by the great majority of the younger generation of the 1950s. It was thanks to a relative few people like Sean O Riada and the early Comhaltas Cheolteoiri that the great turn-around in fortune for the traditional music and singing began. Now the living tradition is once again strong enough for today's younger generation to rebel against its strictures, which has always been the task for younger generations everywhere in all eras and in all facets of public life. Now it is a broad field and it is possible for young musicians to 'hate' it while mining it assiduously for inspiration. This is how a tradition lives, not as a museum-piece. The best stands up to criticism and is constantly re-interpreted, the rest may be neglected until perhaps some new genius 'discovers' its heretofore hidden merits. It is surely no co-incidence that Scotland's new autonomy and the resurgence of its Gaelic culture make Scotland the media's 'the new Ireland'. I confidently predict a revival of her football fortunes within the next 5 years.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Jim McLean
Date: 09 Sep 02 - 12:07 PM

Read Hugh MacDiarmid's 'A Drunk Man Looks at a Thistle'. Lots of the above questions are addressed. Jim Mclean


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Peg
Date: 09 Sep 02 - 01:33 PM

to go somewhat off-topic. I am trying to organize an outdoor festival in western NY for next summer or fall. At a foklore center/campground that hosts many pagan gatherings. "Nine Woods: A Pan-Celtic Arts Festival" If any Mudcatters might be interested in attending and performing or giving workshops, please PM me. I envision workshops on all sorts of arts and music and folklore topics (I am preparing one on performing Robert Burns' songs and one on adapting traditional lyrics), nightly bardic circles round the bonfire, etc.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Boab
Date: 10 Sep 02 - 03:08 AM

Gaelic never was the language of ALL Scots. I speak, by the way, as one who truly regrets the fact that I do not personally "have the Gaelic". My maternal ancestry [ recent] were Gaelic speakers from the Hebrides. One unfortunate consequence of the decline of gaelic in west and north Scotland has been a "bastardisation' of the SCOTS language. This is most noticable in those areas which were most affected by the Jacobite rebellions and their aftermath. One of the results of the destruction of the clan system was a sudden increase in the teaching of English as a second language. The results of this can be plainly heard in the excellent English spoken daily by the residents of Inverness and surrounds, and the English spoken by the Hebrideans--almost a musical experience, and pleasant to listen to. The so-called "Glasgow patter" [and I may have to dodge some fire here!] sounds, to us "chiels frae the fields' to be a mix of pure English, Glesca slang and a smattering of Scots . I strongly believe that the Glasgow tongue owes its style to the same circumstance as the Hebrides and Inverness----an influx of Gaelic speakers after the clearances, and as a result of the Irish potato famine, and their learning of ENGLISH as a necessity in their new abode prompted the development of the Glasgow speech we know today. I do feel that Gaelic should be made available as a subject in schools. But a VOLUNTARY subject. I would have jumped at the chance to "have the Gaelic"---but would always have respected the wishes of those who wanted only English ---or, indeed,Scots--to be the language of their choice.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Diva
Date: 10 Sep 02 - 03:13 PM

Very interesting thread. As you all know, we have our own parliament and it has been announced that the new notices in said parliament will be in English, Gaelic and Braille but not in Scots. Now what does that say about us as a Nation and about the preservation of Scots culture?

Diva


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Jim McLean
Date: 10 Sep 02 - 05:13 PM

We have a glorified Parish council, not a parliament, and 'Scots' is the plural of 'Scot'. The adjective as in language is 'Scotch', i.e, I am a Scotchman. Cheers, jim Mclean


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,sorefingers
Date: 10 Sep 02 - 09:26 PM

1) How does the world preceive Scotland and its Gaelic culture?

2) Is there something about Scots Gaelic that makes it less accesible, or acceptable than Irish?

I don't think the World knows a thing about it.

The Isles are remote, the Highlands are hard to reach. I think Gaelic like a lot of regional languages - Euskera Welsh etc - is having a rough ride these days, TV, Radio, the Internet, Globalism.

To those fighting the trend I wish good luck - they will need it.

I also think that far far more important to Scotland is her autonomy, now that is a Global ball game!


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: mack/misophist
Date: 10 Sep 02 - 11:13 PM

I suspect the most aggressively Scottish songs are passed over for a reason. As much as I love Killiecrankie, Prestonpans, and their ilk, one needs a lexicon to guess what they're about. Most Irish songs lack this quality.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Teribus
Date: 11 Sep 02 - 02:46 AM

Guest heinrich, as a Scot I have never felt oppressed by anyone at any time.

"A free Scotland is what is needed and then your culture will get the recognition it deserves. Ard Mhacha. "

A free Scotland? - From the time of Robert the Bruce (Norman Knight) to my knowledge Scotland has always been free. It was a Scottish King that ascended the throne of England on the death of Elizabeth the First, and a Scotish Parliament that voted for the Act of Union with the English Parliament in 1707.

As for Scottish culture being recognized throughout the world - I think the Highland Gatherings (imitated widely in other countries where Scots settled) and the international festivals held each year in Scotland do a pretty good job of displaying different aspects of Scottish culture.

Guest Boab above has it right on the mark. Gaelic was not, and never has been the language of all Scots. If the personal interest is there by all means learn it, but to force it into the school curriculum in Scotland would be a retrograde step that would hinder the education of children in Scotland - they would derive greater benefit from learning Latin (key to many other languages).


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Mudlark
Date: 11 Sep 02 - 02:51 AM

Fascinating thread. I think one thing that has been overlooked regarding the accessibility of Irish, as opposed to Scots, culture (as perceived by the multitude), is the fact that Hollywood fell in love with Irish romanticism.
Irish are perceived as having the gift of gab, and all that gab about fairies, little people, leprechans, etc. and black-haired, blue eyed boy-os charming the girls was for many years the stuff of Hollywood cinema fluff. Especially in the 40's and 50's, when the movies had greater impact than they have today, the "no Irish need apply" scenario was replaced by actors happily spouting "Sure and yer that lovely, ma cushla." Often musical numbers were thrown in with a race horse and a plucky short jockey, with a brogue you could cut with a knife, in the background.

In the 60's this was taken past absurdity right into the rank marketplace with the adverts for Irish Spring, a hand/body soap. 75 minutes worth of stereotypical movie making reduced to a 90 second commercial.

I'm half Irish, and I well remember the cache this gave me when I was a teenage folk singer. Now I'm all Scots, by marriage, a Ross...with no cache at all, Mel Gibson notwithstanding.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,sorefingers
Date: 12 Sep 02 - 05:45 PM

Teribus - the English have ye bamboozeled, first to do the dirty work - Australia - Canada and the Colonies while yet captive, but to add salt to the sore - taking the Shortcake!; convince us that none of it ever happened and freedom is what this was all along!

Who did the Enlish need to stomp upon? First they used the Scots to stomp on the Welsh, next the Irish, some more of the same several times over including the plantation of Ulster by greedy wee Scotsmen in Kilts, next stomp all over India and several other places.

That would be fine if Scotland benefited from the booty but you know far better than I, no a farthing of it ever came hame to the wee hooose in da glen!

Howdo freedom.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 12 Sep 02 - 08:35 PM

Oh, right, blame everything on the Wicked English. It's time to grow up, take personal responsibility, and move beyond that sad, self-destructive attitude. It's particularly common among those whose ancestors left the Motherland long, long ago, and who prefer old wives' tales to objective history; but unfortunately is also used as an all-purpose excuse for personal failure by a good few who still live there. Scotland is a great nation; it doesn't need imaginary enemies to give it a sense of purpose.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Chanteyranger
Date: 12 Sep 02 - 11:54 PM

I find Scottish gaelic songs to be more melodically accessible than Irish language songs. To my ear, the melodies seem more flowing. This is not to judge one superior to the other - just a different way of singing, but my personal preference is Scottish gaelic songs.

Chanteyranger


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Haruo
Date: 13 Sep 02 - 12:03 AM

I will persist in insisting on "Lallans" in preference to "Scots" (or "Scotch", which is not a language but a class of whiskies).

Lìolaind


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Teribus
Date: 13 Sep 02 - 04:20 AM

Guest sorefingers,

I would venture to suggest you go and do a bit of reading. I would suggest for a start "Warrior Race", "Safeguard of the Seas", "Steel Bonnet" and "Scotlands Story".

Malcolm Douglas post above is right on the mark. The late Roy Williamson also put it perfectly in one of the lines of his song "Scotland will Flourish".

"And let us be rid of those bigots and fools
Who will not let Scotland live and let live."

The bigots and fools he was talking about are the Scots who pass the blame and fault for all their ills onto others - they themselves of course are perfect.

Now to get back to your post:

"Teribus - the English have ye bamboozeled, first to do the dirty work - Australia - Canada and the Colonies while yet captive, but to add salt to the sore - taking the Shortcake!; convince us that none of it ever happened and freedom is what this was all along!"

What dirty work did the Scots do for the English in Australia, Canada and the Colonies? Taking them in their correct chronological order.

The colonies:
Nova Scotia, Scottish settlement to the north of the English colonies on the eastern seaboard of America, from which they were barred from trading prior to the Act of Union of 1707.

Jamaica and Barbados, English colonies founded during Cromwell's Commonwealth. Became the repository for Scottish prisoners of war taken during Cromwells campaign in Scotland during the civil war. Those prisoners were sent out as slave labour to work the sugar plantations. Have you never wondered why so many people from those islands have scottish surnames? The prisoners were landed and allocated to plantation owners, their names were entered on the plantation books. Unfortunately the Scots were not best adapted for hard manual labour in those conditions and tended to die. They were replaced by African slaves, who on arrival were given the names of the dead - it made the paper-work easier. (Note: That bit of information I got from a resident of Barbados - one Ramsay Macdonald, who did not have one drop of Scots blood in him)

Canada:
When the French got interested in Canada they had no intention of developing it. They explored and laid claim to large parts of Canada and America from the Canadian border right down to the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Their reason for doing this was to effectively hem in the English colonists on the coast. Hint take a look at some of the place names down that strip of the states and the dates from which they have been known as such. The British were granted Canada under the terms of the treaty that ended the Seven Years War - France was just not interested in it. Now the Seven Years War followed fairly swiftly after the conclusion of the 1745 Jacobite rebellion in Scotland - The British forces who fought the French in Canada were predominantly English regiments not Scottish - apart from regiments like the Black Watch and Kings Own Scottish Borderers the British Army had very few Scottish Regiments up until the Start of the French Revolutionary War/Napoleonic Wars, for very obvious reasons.

Australia:
Settled predominatly by convict transports - Why - because convicts could no longer be transported to the American colonies. Not one convict transport sailed to Australia from Scotland - the vast majority of those sailed from ports on the south coast of England, the remainder sailed from Dublin and Cork. What I am saying is very well documented - go and research it, but I doubt you will as it does not fit in with the myths you hold so dear. With the advent of the Highland Clearances Scots did emmigrate to Australia but the main destination tended to be Canada.

Next you said:

"Who did the Enlish need to stomp upon? First they used the Scots to stomp on the Welsh, next the Irish, some more of the same several times over including the plantation of Ulster by greedy wee Scotsmen in Kilts, next stomp all over India and several other places."

Again putting the above in correct chronological order:

Wales:
As Edward I neutralised Wales (Note he did not conquer Wales - oddly enough, no-one ever has, not even the Romans) before he took an interest in Scotland. Exactly when were the Scots ever used to "stomp on Wales"? You made the assertion - please provide details.

Ireland:
When James VIth became King of England (1603 - 15 years after the defeat of the Spanish Armada). He viewed what he called his "middle-shires" (the Anglo-Scottish border) as a nest of potential trouble-makers. The Spanish still continued to meddle in English affairs by continued dialogue with dissaffected nobles and clan chiefs in Ireland. James decided to kill two birds with one stone by "planting" border Scots and English families in the North of Ireland (O'Neill country). They didn't want to go and they certainly did not wear kilts. The one thing that James could depend on was that once granted land, these people would would fight like hell to hold it - after all that is what they'd been doing on the Anglo-Scottish border for damn near 350 years. Further more they were staunchly Protestant or Episcopalean, therefore less likely to be woed by any approach or offer from the King of Spain.

India:
Like Canada, the French were removed during the Seven Years War. The issue and driving force behind European involvement in India was trade not conquest. British, French and Portugese TRADING COMPANIES established posts in various parts of India with the connivance and agreement of the Indian rulers of those areas. The French commercial interests tried to squeeze out the British commercial interests and vice versa. India in the meantime had rulers who were expansionist in their own right - their incentive was conquest. Security for their potential targets lay in even closer ties with the British, French and Portugese. When the Seven Years War broke out in Europe, advantage was taken by both the French and the British to create a monopoly in India by trying to oust the other. By alliance and military action using privately raised armies the British came out on top (Clive of India worked for the honourable East India Company - He was not a professional soldier and he did not act on behalf of the British Crown)"

Finally you come out with:

"That would be fine if Scotland benefited from the booty but you know far better than I, no a farthing of it ever came hame to the wee hooose in da glen!"

Sorefingers, have a good look at the state of Scotland in the period 1700 to 1707, the year of the Act of Union. Seven years of successive crop failures and the collapse of the Darien Scheme - the population of Scotland were starving and the country was bankrupt. Take a look into the size and prosperity of the following cities in Scotland during this same period - Edinburgh, Glasgow, Dundee and Aberdeen. Then compare that to what followed subsequent to the signing of the Act of Union. You assert that "...na a farthing of it ever came hame to the wee hoose in da glen!". With the English colonies and markets opened to the Scots by the signing of the Act of Union a damn sight more than a farthing came home. The trading opportunities opened up built Glasgow, built Dundee, built Paisley, made it possible for the complete redevelopment of Edinburgh. Of the patents that exist in the world 57% of them are held by British companies a serious percentage of those patents are the work and inventions of Scots engineers and scientists. Sorefingers name one that predates the year 1707.

"Howdo freedom." - Yeah damn right!!!


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Jim McLean
Date: 13 Sep 02 - 04:28 AM

Dear Liland, Scotch is an adjective describing whisky, tomatoes, 'Old Scotch Mithers' and men and women and any noun you may care to use. Jim Mclean


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: ard mhacha
Date: 13 Sep 02 - 01:53 PM

Teribus, You don`t have to go back to the dark ages to prove your point, I was well into middle-age when I had to run the gauntlet on more than one occasion, when confronted by uniformed football thugs from the Highlands to the Lowlands. It was in your best interest to avoid your "free" Scots in Britsh Army uniform on the streets of the unfree six north eastern counties of Ireland. Ask your local Scots Nat` how free you are, oil be seeing you as they say in Aberdeen. Ard Mhacha.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Airto
Date: 13 Sep 02 - 02:19 PM

The main consumer attractions at British Trade Fairs are smoked salmon, shortcake, whisky, oat biscuits, Angus beef (a few years ago,alas), Dundee cakes and marmalade, etc.

These products are, of course, all Scottish and have an international reputation for high quality. They are marketed much more successfully than their Irish equivalents, which are only recently starting to raise their profile.

Commercially the Scots have benefited from membership of the UK. The Irish are only catching up since joining the EU.

Culturally speaking, I have the impression we Irish are running out of steam. The creative wave of the 80s and early 90s seems to have petered out.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Boab
Date: 13 Sep 02 - 02:25 PM

Thanks, Giok, for "Nancy Nicholson " ---a gem!!


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,sorefingers
Date: 13 Sep 02 - 06:25 PM

Teribus - lets be realistic, you have an opinion that is all. Look at the facts - see the marks of dissapointment of Scotsmen where ever the English promised and did not deliver. See the Scottish Rite for example ..what a bloody joke. Like the Scotnat fellow said SCREWED again!

Se how they pass the dirt onto Scotland - all the bullies whare ever they are needed are SCOTISH names, heck in Australia there are two kinds of subject, Irish Convict or Scottish Screw, and the sais - oh they keep real Australian or is it Anglosaxon.

Don't get me started on the Americas or I will be sorry.

I am what the ancestors and sais law made us - outlaws in our own country and willing warriors for any who raised the blade to the mighty British ever since.

Scotland free ... not yet but soon ..


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Teribus
Date: 16 Sep 02 - 07:27 AM

Ard Mhacha you advise to:

"Ask your local Scots Nat` how free you are, "

Why?? My freedom I have exercised and enjoyed for as long as I can remember. I don't have to ask anyone about it - If you feel you have to consult someone as to whether or not you are free - Then more fool you.

As to the bit that went before.

"I was well into middle-age when I had to run the gauntlet on more than one occasion, when confronted by uniformed football thugs from the Highlands to the Lowlands. It was in your best interest to avoid your "free" Scots in Britsh Army uniform on the streets of the unfree six north eastern counties of Ireland. "

If memory, plus a belated recent apology, are anything to go by. It wasn't "uniformed football thugs from the Highlands to the Lowlands", in, "British Army uniform" who were responsible for the indiscriminate planting of explosives specifically aimed at causing the maximum number of civilian casualties "on the streets of the unfree six north eastern counties of Ireland". As I've stated previously if any unrepresentative and unelected body ever told me that they were protecting me and fighting for my freedom by indiscriminently planting bombs in areas where my wife or family might have just cause to be - I'd tell them in no uncetain terms to bugger off and protect somebody else.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Maurice Mann
Date: 16 Sep 02 - 08:24 AM

All very interesting, but as usual prejudice often replaces reason and historical fact. Hollywood has a lot to answer for, I suspect (especially Braveheart and Brigadoon)

Try to find an album called 'Craobh nan Ubhal' by Flora MacNeill. Beautiful, traditional, Hebridean Gaelic songs.

For historical accuracy, a good start is 'The age of Arthur: a history of the British Isles from 350 to 650' by John Morris

Mo


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Teribus
Date: 16 Sep 02 - 08:33 AM

Guest sorefingers:

You advise me to look at the facts but offer none - your references to irrelevant Masonic claptrap do not constitute facts by any stretch of the imagination.

In my postings above I have offered reasonable observation based on historical fact.

"...in Australia there are two kinds of subject, Irish Convict or Scottish Screw" Please, please do some research - any would help - still why I should be surprised when I predicted that you would not bother to check any of your supposed "facts". So there were no English convicts sent to Australia?? (If you do ever look into it you will find that they comprised 75-80% of those sent to Australia).

Please by all means get on the Americas - the extent of your singular lack of knowledge and "chip on the shoulder" bigotry would be interesting to determine - If it wasn't so lamentable.

I mean honestly!!!

"I am what the ancestors and sais law made us - outlaws in our own country and willing warriors for any who raised the blade to the mighty British ever since."

Just what century are you living in??? No doubt a student of the Mel Gibson faculty of Scottish History. "outlaws", "willing warriors" - you wouldn't know either if they lept up and bit your arse. I have not read such absolute rubbish in my entire life.

You started your last post with - "Lets be realistic, you have an opinion that is all." - at least my opinion (FREELY FORMED) is based on historical fact, research and reasoned arguement.

I somehow have this mental picture of you, face daubed blue and white, staring into the mirror of your bathroom cabinet screaming the word "FREEEEEEEEEDOM!!!!" Can't imagine what the neighbours must think - I know what I do.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: Aodh
Date: 23 Dec 02 - 03:05 PM

Tighearna naomha!?! what have I started, A big thank you to all of you for shearing your views. It has been very interesting ti read through them all, and given the time of year I'll just say:
Nollaig Cridheil agus bliadhna mhath ur! (But only to the parts of Scotland where Gaelic was spoken!)


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: George Seto - af221@chebucto.ns.ca
Date: 23 Dec 02 - 06:45 PM

Nollaig Chridheil agus Bliadhna Mhath Ur dhuit-sa!

Enjoy yourself.


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Subject: RE: Help: Gaelic Scotland, As others see us!
From: GUEST,Sandy McLean
Date: 23 Dec 02 - 07:55 PM

It is more important that we do not see ourselves in the stereotype of others!
Nollaig Mhath Dhuibh!
             Sandy


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