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bear by san

March 2017



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criminal minds reid airquotes

welcome to 1984. are you ready for the third world war?

hawkwing_lb talks very well indeed about being Irish, and post-colonial, and what it means in terms of the history and culture of her nation.

I can speak in English, but in Irish I am mute.

I have no ear for it. I have no tongue for it. In my mouth it becomes clunky and without music, full of awkward solecisms and embarrassed pauses.


The serendipitous vagaries of my fpage led me to read this right after Deepad's post.
That is serendipity. And yes, I was thinking of how beautifully they resonate when I posted the link.

Also, they are both gorgeous and painful and true. and deserve to be widely read.
A few years ago I read the Usenet group scot.scots -- devoted to the Scots language -- and noticed that all the messages were in English rather than Scots. All. Every one of them.
Thank you for posting this link. The author articulates a feeling I have had for years about the hidden populations of Europe, and the European populations that got subsumed by more dominant ethnic groups. There's stories of oppression there--the Scots and Irish that came to the Northwest linked up easily with the Native American populations, especially inland, with a lot of commonality of mind there, from what little research I've been able to do.

My father left Hawaii (joined the military) to follow his highschool sweetheart to the Mainland. Culture Shock doesn't even begin to cover what happens to a hapahaole in Texas in 1955.

His response to the tricky racial balancing act was to 'act white' and to put away anything of his Hawaiian culture. He passed, and therefore we passed too.

And the things he denied and put aside became the ghosts of the stories we would have been told, the songs we would have sung, the philosophy of life we would have seen modeled. We would have spoken at least some Hawaiian. We would almost certainly have picked up a good bit of 'talk story'.

Instead we got a classic 1950's 1960's working class white childhood, complete with whispered reminders not to talk about how we were different. Figuring out how to say what I need to say is something like my Lifework.
The Immigrant Experience, 1950s style. Argh. Double argh.
Thanks for the link. I'm English born and bred but have lived in Wales for over 30 years. I speak Welsh badly and I'm committed to speaking it better. I therefore do understand just how complex the relationship between nationality, cultural identity and language is. Seeing an Irish perspective was interesting.

Quite why Welsh is in a much better state than Irish, I don't know. There was a TV programme on a while ago where a chap travelled around Wales refusing to speak a word of English. He actually managed quite well, even when the people he was asking directions of didn't speak any Welsh. A little later, I saw a clip of an Irish chap trying something similar and he was being told to speak English. That just wouldn't happen here. People might think he was bonkers, but they wouldn't dare insist he spoke English.
That's really interesting. Of course, language is a huge issue in the US--the whole "speak English, dammit" thing that ignores the fact that Spanish-speakers and Francophones have been here just as long, and the dominant language groups are *all* the descendants of colonizers and conquerors.

Reading Yeats was a huge revelation in high school. He wasn't on the curriculum (Naipaul was just making it, so were Martin Carter, Wayne Brown, Louise Bennett, and Andrew Salkey, but that's a story for another time). It was astonishing, after reading standard poets like Shakespeare, Milton, Tennyson, Pound, and Eliot, to come across someone who was clearly part of the Great Tradition, but also part of the colonial experience. It wasn't the gigantic, powerful, Easter 1916, but poems as different as September 1913 and The Fiddler of Dooney, that did it for me. I was struggling at the time with my own issues of racial/cultural identity and literature of a variety of kinds was one way to come up with answers.

I was lucky that, at about the same time, I was able to get some exposure to Galician, and acquire knowledge of the language -- thanks as much to my aunts' sending me stuff as to my mother being willing to teach me the language, which she'd half-forgotten. Son eu fillo de tres ou catro culturas, non só de dous. Dat a di whuol raas prablim.
I'm completely ethnicly denatured on all fronts, with the exception of some social attitudes, a taste for sardines and knacke, and one Swedish nursery rhyme.

I had to teach myself basic Ukrainian cooking as an adult, and I have none of the languages, and I'm at most third generation on everything except the Scottish/English/Cherokee side. (They, obviously, have been here since either the land bridge, or the Cavaliers, depending on which group you mean.)

ETA: what I mean to say is, I envy you a little, and wish I had those languages--Swedish, Ukrainian--even fragments of them.

Edited at 2009-01-16 02:53 pm (UTC)
All these dichotomies form a pattern, globalization growing pains, in a gloss. Almost as if Gaea had decided to create a world of outliers (which is my new term for the one person that is the oddball of any group)

Of course, that is a romantic notion. And i have met your grandfathers and one of your greats, and they, although immigrants were not romantic or introspective people. I guess that's your job.

Personally, i have enough trouble with the ramifications of being a Polack Redneck.

My point? With six billion people, very few of whom share any solid identity, communications are a priority.

Someone above got the Irish post and the Hindu (?) post one after the other on their flist.

More of a solution than a problem, i think.

Those posts and the one about the African American that wrote you an open letter, seem to me to be about reconciling one's perceived heritage rather that accepting it and going on.

Hate to sound like an old hippie, but i have been in a place, a society where everybody had to create their identities out of what ever scraps of heritage appealed to them, and carry on.

A lot of it was bullshit, and there was a surplus of Frodo's and Sunshine's for a while, but it always reminded me of the challenges that all immigrants face, creating new personas in a new country.

And it's always a new country, everyday.

We're pattern-sensing creatures, to the point where we becomes pattern-creating creatures.
Somehow this reminds me of Jerry Cody, who turned into Dylan McOda and a decent poet. Something about Vatican II.

But as for me, i could read Taras Shevchenko and listening to the dumas of Zinovif Shtokalko, but actually Hirum Williams and Robert Zimmerman are the ones who wrote my life.
You've flattered me. I didn't set out to be interesting. :)

Interesting and evocative.
You know, I resent my mother's side of the family for a lot of abusive, twisted shit, but I'm really glad they taught me a little bit of Norwegian and made krumkake every year at Christmas.

The lutefisk, however, was _not_ appreciated.
Lutefisk never is.

Pickled herring, also, really. We have refrigerators now, people.