Duffys Cut

Duffy 001 Duffy 005 Duffy 007 Duffy 008

This page is a foil to the Duffys Cut Project of Immaculata University in Pennsylvania. It intends to be a thorn in the flesh, not for any malevolent reason, but to offer a contrary view whenever flatulent claims come to light.

Eagla na Galru


163 responses to “Duffys Cut

  1. Don MacFarlane

    November 27, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    Belfast Newsletter 1832

    I have scanned through the Belfast Newsletter of 1832 and I have come to the conclusion that there is no material of worth to be had from that paper that will provide any clues, ‘soft’ or ‘hard’, into social circumstances of that period in North-West Ulster.

    This is a disappointment considering what a strong connection the newspaper had with Henry Joy McCracken, the United Irishman:

    The paper just covers the same old stuff, week after week: detailed Reports from Westminster; notices of ships arriving in ports; prices of goods in farmers’ markets; reports from Assizes (but not from the North-West); and a mish-mash of trivia such as can be found in most local newspapers.

    When I have time, in the early New Year, I will trawl the local papers of 1832 in the North-West; Derry Journal and Strabane Morning Post mainly, to see if they are any better. Meanwhile, I see the Watsons toned down their piece for the New York times, referring only to cholera in Duffy’s Cut, not murder. The month before that piece, they hyped up the murder angle for the Daily Mail (an English paper). It appears they cannot be consistent and the story changes depending upon the expected readership.

  2. Waxwing

    March 3, 2013 at 8:56 am

    The photos that head up this page are from the Bone Interment in Ardara on Saturday March 2nd 2013 of what may be the remains of John Ruddy.

    #1 The Watson brothers playing the bagpipes in the porch of the parochial hall. After they had finished, there was an embarrassing lull of ten seconds before the gathering remembered to applaud! The first of two tunes was the refrain,’Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms’ – an excellent choice considering the nature of the occasion:

    #2 The Gallagher plot where the bones were buried.

    I have no idea if the Ruddy clan were in attendance, I suspect not. The question arises as to what was the mad rush to have the bones reinterred when their identity is still not established. Material was provided by a Ruddy for DNA testing three years ago but that has never been carried out, supposedly on the grounds of cost. Was there ever a clearer case of ‘cart before the horse’? The Watson’s explanation was that they had a deadline that was imposed upon them by a documentary crew!

    # 3-4 Scenes in and around Ardara.

    I tried to initiate small conversation with Bill Watson but got nowhere as he seemed a bit flummoxed at my presence. I don’t think I would be particularly welcome on his patch and the interchange lasted all of ten seconds!

    “Hello, Professor, I am etc and we have corresponded by email; I hope it all went well; I arrived a bit late and I missed the service; perhaps we will hear a blast on those bagpipes?; I will speak to Frank as well”.

    Bill Watson pointed at Frank who was standing a few feet away, speaking to a reporter, he said “I am off to play the bagpipes”, and he turned his back on me and walked off. He made no effort to return the light patter of attempted conversation, made no effort to come over to me in the hall after playing, turned his back again, and that was it.

    I had no more success with Frank, although I walked the entire length of the path with him, as he was totally engrossed with the reporter. In other words, I felt like a gatecrasher despite the fact it was an open event.

  3. Don MacFarlane

    July 27, 2012 at 9:29 am

    A Celt in All of Us

    If proof were ever needed, this ensemble only has two official Celts (one Irish, one Scots), the three main musicians sound Appalachian and supplied the soundtrack to ‘Oh Brother, Where Art Thou’ but are Illinoian (Alison Krauss), Ohian (Douglas) and Pennsylvanian (Barenberg), the others are English. If the song sounds too Celtic and dirge-like at first, a few plays gets one in the mood. I prefer the original, also on Youtube, by Linda Thompson, wife to the English composer of the song, Richard Thompson, as it sounds more heartfelt (they split) but the voice of Krauss is more pure.

  4. Mary Cornell

    May 29, 2012 at 5:09 am

    I had a few minutes and decided to check and see what I have been missing and came to the realization that my last post is missing. It is the one that said that I would be away from the site for a couple of weeks for my daughter’s high school graduation. It has also been a particularly difficult month with the death of one of her friends and two others who were killed instantly when their car was hit by a drunk driver going over 100 mph on a city street. It is hard for anyone to understand why these things happen. Graduation is happy and sad at the same time

    Will be away from the site for a few more days. Please try not to solve all of the world’s problems while I am away. Not to worry, my ability to voice my opinion is still intact.

  5. celticknot226

    May 20, 2012 at 10:32 pm

    Hi Don! I came across an article in Scotland Magazine: The clan MacBean: “The MacBeans are part of the great Clan Chattan Federation of 16 clans that united under the leadership of the Mackintoshes to control and protect their territories in the central Highlands”. I didn’t realize the clans were part of a federation of clans. They were supporters of the Start Kings. They linkedthoth the Jacobites in Northern England. Many members of this clan were transported to the America’s.

    • winnie50

      May 21, 2012 at 4:28 am

      Hi Don and Eileen,

      I’m still here. But from here on I’m going to check in only occasionally. This has partly to do with Mary’s pointed dislike of my intellectual approach to things, her sense that my posting a well-grounded argument constitutes an act of aggression, an attempt to silence others, rather than an invitation to mount a counter-argument–which in my experience most Irish people online are very willing and able to do, regardless of their educational level, because they aren’t socialized to be anti-intellectual. But as I mentioned before, the primary issue is I’m busy right now finishing up spring quarter and working on my book, which has to be finished by September. Be well. I’ll keep in touch.


      • Don MacFarlane

        May 21, 2012 at 7:25 am

        Thanks for that and we look forward to both of your inputs from time to time. Obviously the ‘bookclub’ can’t continue with a ‘membership’ of just me and Eileen so we will wait and see what develops. As the man said, it was fun while it lasted!

        I thought my post on Taliban poetry might have tempted Winnie back into the fold, especially the bit where the bloggers posted in the comments “The Taliban think they are respecting women – perhaps this poetry will make that clearer!” and “How many of the poets were women!”
        Either way it looks to be an excellent source for her university courses on literature and gender studies?

        Anyway, whatever offence was given or taken, I’m sure there was no intention to be mean-spirited. My daughter is a funny, considerate and caring person but put her behind the wheel of a car and her road rage at times would shock you!

      • celticknot226

        May 21, 2012 at 12:07 pm

        Hi Don! This is just an observation on myself only not meant to offend anyone. When I was reading about situational factors that influence how someone may react in a situation the article said that our cultural traditions may color how we see things. I had never thought about it before. I am guilty of putting my personal feelings or my beliefs into something that I have commented on. I’m going to try to be more evidenced based! This might be a big transition for me as I’m a fairly new to the blogging scene and really new into the research part of our blogs. Most times on the blogging sites people put their feelings out there because it’s easier than telling someone face to face. For myself I’m going to try not to do this and see how it goes. “Just the facts Mam! as they say!

        Don, what if you put a link to ask people to join in a discussion when they look at various parts of your sites or if they are looking up historical or ancestry questions. Perhaps if they ask an ancestry question you could ask what else their interested. For ex: historical topics and if they would be interested in a discussion about it. I saw on the bottom of a page you had a poll for people to take, what about a poll on topics people would be interested in or would want to discuss.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 21, 2012 at 2:59 pm

        I’ll see if I can do something with this suggestion. It would be nice if the visitors who ‘hit’ the site and/or complete the poll would also post suggestions or comments, much as you suggest. Watch this space!

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 21, 2012 at 7:51 pm

        Celeste Ray is big into the kilt in her book ‘Atlantic Scots’. She claims that Americans go overboard with the kilt as a symbol of Scottish identity, even if they have no Highland connections, with those being Lowland or Scots-Irish instead. Contrast this with Scotland where the only place you will see a kilt these days is in Inverness.

  6. Don MacFarlane

    May 20, 2012 at 8:35 pm

    A Scots-Irish/Appalachian medley from Fred Morrison (from Scotland) on uilinn pipes and Bruce Molsky from New York on banjo.

  7. celticknot226

    May 20, 2012 at 9:21 am

    Hi Don

    Situational Leadership Styles : how are you measuring this?

    • celticknot226

      May 20, 2012 at 9:29 am

      Sorry! I asked this twice by mistake. I didn’t see my earlier post so it came up again. I saw there was a relationship between the leader’s knowledge, ability and enthusiasm/motivation, their followers’ skill level, their level of energy towards a project etc that in turn reflects on the leader.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 20, 2012 at 9:59 am

        My choice that certain historical figures could be the yardsticks, whereby current Celtic identity could be measured, was independent of anything to do with leadership. In the absence, presumably, of knowledge that a person might have about Celtic ancestors, this was a proxy method or device which could also enhance a person’s knowledge of the social circumstances that pertained at the time their ancestor lived and when they made decisions about emigration.

        Back to the concept of ingroups/outgroups. That not only relates to the in/out ‘who is a Celt and what kind?’, ‘who is not a Celt and why not?’and top/bottom (leadership), it is also about near/far. The Situation issue similarly is independent of the leadership or role model issue although the two cannot be entirely divorced of each other.

        What that may boil down to is that, much as you have pointed out in an earlier post, Celtic qualities may travel well and a person may demonstrate those qualities (including leadership qualities) in a far-off place and not on home soil, in a way that is sufficient to resonate and inspire others to announce or feel their own Cekltic identity. Eric Kaufmann takes it further and states in his paper on Liberal Ethnicity (and to paraphrase him) that a non-Celt, such as someone Japanese although unlikely, can declare himself to be Celtic even though he has no Celtic blood in his body. What do you make of that?

      • celticknot226

        May 20, 2012 at 12:04 pm

        Hi Don

        I think any clan could be evaluated with this grid using the Language, Land, Loyalty To The Clan, Mistrust of Governmental Authority, Military readiness. I think you would have to have some knowledge of a clan’s history and it’s interactions with others to put them through the grid. My father used to say just because someone was born in China doesn’t make him a Chinamen. So perhaps it’s our interactions within the group and towards others makes us who we are or our ability to behave like someone who is in a clan or a celt. Perhaps the word celt equals clan. I saw on line, Spain is known to have Celtic identity.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 20, 2012 at 12:33 pm

        The man who saved the British Empire by defeating Napoleon at Waterloo, Arthur Wellesley aka Wellington, when asked about his Irish identity (he was born in Dublin and grew up there till a teenager) replied ” being born in a stable does not make on a horse!”

        Despite refuting his unquestionable Irishness he pushed through Catholic Emancipation in 1829 on the back of his hero status when he threatened twice to resign as Prime Minister of Great Britain if King George didn’t knuckle down.

        Another Irishman who saved the British Empire but who played down his Irish identity (he grew up in the ancestral home in Moville in County Donegal) was Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery who defeated Rommel at El Alamein.

      • celticknot226

        May 20, 2012 at 12:18 pm

        Hi Don, You had asked how the leaders’ external influences such as loss of family, no connectedness with family, coming from a family that was wealthy and that had a pedigree affected their actions. Would it not also affect their leadership style? If someone who had a pedigree that may lead by thinking they are entitled and may take advantage of someone. Where as someone who did not have a connection with a family may not have any ties to the land or people so he may lead by not caring for the land or its people, his decisions may be just financial. If someone lost their family early in life they may sympathize with families on their land or connect better with people and may be people and land oriented.

      • celticknot226

        May 20, 2012 at 12:27 pm

        Hi, when we talked about Celtic identity and that we couldn’t separate the Irish Celts from the Scottish Celts that they were the same, Perhaps this could be true for the words Clan and Celt. In other words we can’t separate the two. Perhaps other cultures relate to the word Celt because many cultures are group/ family oriented. For ex: American Indians, Inca and Mayan Tribes, Aboriginal tribes etc… They behave like the tribes in Ireland and Scotland.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 20, 2012 at 1:47 pm

        Reading Celeste Ray’s book ‘Transatlantic Scots’, I think she would probably agree with you. Yet again, there may be a difference between home-grown and born-away Celts in this regard. Apparently, in the US clan gatherings are a big deal and that is where most Americans get their Celtic identity if they are Scots-American, through the clan gathering. According to her, the Ku Klux Klan will soon be wearing tartan!

        In my other website on the Highlands

        on the Genealogy page, if you scroll down, I have quite a lot written on the different clans, who they fought for, place of origin etc. You will see that some of the clan structures are very tight, some not,
        some practically extinct, but I suspect the American Highland Gatherings don’t reflect this. Highland clans that are genetically Irish include Buchanan, MacInnes (McGuinness), MacLachlan (McLaughlin), MacLaren, MacNeill, MacRea, Matheson, Morrison, Munro, Urquhart.

        Then there are the Irish who don’t seem to have developed or held on to any recognisable clan structure at all. Certainly they didn’t employ it after the Flight of the Earls in fighting the English. The Celts that bug me the most are the Welsh who fought most of the battles for the English, even or mostly against their fellow Celts. They were famous for their expertise with the longbow and the Irish and Scots were no match for them. The Welsh had no clan structure either but they have a very strong Celtic identity today, mostly based upon their preservation of their language. If you walk round Cardiff you will often hear it spoken.

  8. Don MacFarlane

    May 20, 2012 at 7:43 am

    Seems to make perfect sense and it gives pause for thought with regard to how these people found themselves in those situations that enhanced, compromised or had nil effect upon their Celtic identity. In other words, did they put themselves in those situations as glory-hunters, self-promotionists or martyrs. Therefore the outcome was motivated by reasons that were nothing to do with them being a good or bad Celt. I will say more about that in a separate post.

    Judged with a different prism, not that of Celtic identity, their identity-states could come out completely differently which is the whole point of some of the chapters viz. has history judged those people somewhat harshly or too favourably. That harks back to the Gallows speeches of Robert Emmet and William Orr:


    “if I am prevented from vindicating myself, let no man dare to calumniate me. Let my character and motives repose till other times and other men can do them justice”.


    “if to have loved my country and to have united with my [countrymen] in the most orderly means to seek redress for wrongdoings be felonies, then I am a felon”.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 20, 2012 at 8:09 am

      Just to let you know we are not just talking to ourselves. Since the Bookclub/Media page was set up, the number of casual ‘hits’ to the site has tripled – from just over a thousand this past month (April/May) last year to over three thousand this year. Most of that has come from Google searches.

      • celticknot226

        May 20, 2012 at 8:45 am

        Hey! That’s impressive! Thanks to your efforts and stimulating topics! Are they finding what they’re looking for? Do they stay on the site and look up different topics? Is there anyway you can get Mary’s and Winnie’s email? could you write to them to ask them to come back to the discussion?

        Do you have any suggestions to discuss situational leadership styles? I read a few things on line but I’m not sure how to apply them.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 20, 2012 at 9:00 am

        Yes, I miss Winnie and Mary too. They seem to have had some kind of a spat and I’m still not sure how or why?

  9. celticknot226

    May 20, 2012 at 6:53 am

    Hi Don

    BTW I think as a Celt I have no problems with Common Language part. If you look at the number of posts I made to this website: 197 and counting! that I have the Irish gift of gab! Is there a Scottish equivalent? I think you have as many posts as I do!:)

    I have one point that is not working for me. We spoke about just assigning the attributes to the grid, that a positive value or a negative one didn’t matter. I think it does, especially in the Mistrust of Government category on the grid. For example Macquarrie and MacNevin both were accepted by the group, were goal driven, their position was more important than their power, their beliefs agreed with what the group wanted and they had empathy for the people. This led them to be effective as leaders and as a Celt. They had a positive outcome for the people.

    In contrast, Col Gordon and Archbishop Troy: Were not accepted by the group, were not goal driven, their position was secondary to power, they didn’t yield to group pressure, their beliefs did not agree with a positive outcome and they had no empathy for the people. Thus they had a negative outcome on society.

    The name Mistrust Of Government Authority may be confusing. I understand for a Celt, they didn’t like authority, but maybe it should be viewed as the leader’s authority whether they use their position to help others or their power to hurt others should be considered. When I first read the title I thought they didn’t like the government for what it stood for but in the case of Maquarrie he didn’t seem to go up against the government, he just used his position as a government official to help others.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 20, 2012 at 8:36 am

      Apologies if I stated that polarity (positive or negative values) doesn’t matter. Indeed it does, it goes to the heart of Identity Exploration, as indeed do defaults or non-answers. You have made reference to Role Models and ideals. Unless one has some idea of approval/disapproval ratings, it is not possible to gauge those. Likewise, it is not possible to gauge how well-informed the ratings are unless there is some measure of how well thought-out and comprehensive they are. Hence the appointment of Sarah Palin as vice-Presidential candidate!

      I have not gone into detail with regards to measurement and all we have been doing so far has been EBT stuff (eyeball tests). In other words, does it feel right, not just wearing the right lipstick!

  10. Don MacFarlane

    May 19, 2012 at 9:36 am

    I asked a similar question of Willeen Keough who wrote the chapter just to clarify that these Orangemen were not from Ireland as I thought Orangeism was a peculiarly Irish thing but she was quite definite. They were English fishermen who came from the South West of England, hence more than likely Celts themselves! The P-Celts or Brythonic Celts are from there and Wales, whereas the P-Celts or Goidelic Celts were our lot, the Scots, Manx and Irish.

  11. Don MacFarlane

    May 19, 2012 at 9:19 am

    I hadn’t really expected that you would have thrown yourself as much into the exercise as what you did but the enterprise has been invaluable to me and has forced me to think more clearly. I now have a much clearer grasp as to how to bring my book to proper completion. I have never really questioned its value but it has at times seemed to me to be a rather ugly baby.

    I think you have probably had enough of the Scottish stuff as that is not where your roots lie. If you like, and not as a brutal exercise such as what you have just done, you could round the thing off by considering how the Irish and Scots compared and contrasted, again using the grid as the template. Placed against that you can frame your thoughts within the definition of identity and answer for each ‘tribe’

    “how successful were/are they”, “what makes/made them who they were/are”, “what sacrifices did they make and still remain to be themselves, warts and all”, “in their new locations (Australia and America) how have they redefined themselves but held on to their identiy”?

    I’m hoping that Winnie and Mary have not just disappeared into the wilderness and will add their tuppence worth as well!

    • celticknot226

      May 19, 2012 at 12:33 pm

      Hi Don!

      So why did the fisherman (Orangemen) go to Northern Ireland? Did they go there w/ the Lowland Scots during the Plantation or later. Sure I’ll take a stab at the new questions. What’s a baddy? Are you saying that history should downplay that the Irish and Scottish were not the only victims and that the landlords got a bad rap? In some cases they did try to help the people, going broke in the process. Perhaps the landlords were also victims because they bought the land as a business. In itself, this does not seem like a bad thing. Without the government providing relief they stepped in and went broke in the process. They were viewed negatively because of the emigration/ clearances. In a sense they were also victims of an ineffective government that did not care that the people starved or not. Maybe now that’s why we have assistance for the poor. In the US the money for welfare comes from the taxes we pay and social security comes from the money we take out of our checks each week.

      I don’t mind studying Scotland. My Great Grandmother was born in Airdrie, New Monkland so I do find this interesting. I think the family was Irish. Maybe I’ll learn something about what she observed in 1860-1888 when she was there. My Great Grandparents also lived in Glasgow. I have cousins in Glasgow. I would love to travel there.

      Hey Mary and Winnie! I need you guys back to tell me if I’m on the right track! I miss your input!:)

      Before I can go into Identity: I’m not sure if I was right in my assessment of Identities. You had identified the Scottish identities. I tried to do the Irish peeps but I not sure about them (see earlier posts) Maybe Winnie and Mary can help me hash this out too!

      When you say tribe are you saying the irish and the Scottish. Taking all the men from the Irish side and compare them to the Scottish side: Which identity they each have or collectively as Irish or Scottish?

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 19, 2012 at 4:07 pm

        As far as I understand it, the Orange Order started off around 1796 (long after the Plantation) as the Peep O’Day Boys in County Armagh, and as a response to the activities of the Defender movement that Ambrose McGuigan fought with. I think they felt they needed to organise themselves better and so they had links with the yeomanry and magistrates as well. They also had links with the Church of Ireland and they were an unofficial paramilitary wing of the AngloIrish Ascendancy.

        The Defenders had been making overtures to join with the United Irishmen: that worried the Establishment. It turned its eyes away from some of the more nefarious activities of the Orangemen but they then had to bring in the British troops (under General Ralph Abercrombie). Abercrombie was a decent man with pro-Catholic sympathies, as was the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland (Earl Fizwilliam) as was the Prime Minister (William Pitt). They all argued for catholic emancipation and got the sack.

        None of this Orangeism had its roots in England so it is a bit of an anomaly and a puzzle that English Orangemen turn up in Newfoundland. That is something that would need to be researched to find the answers.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 19, 2012 at 4:23 pm

      I don’t quite understand how this works. Does Star mean better than Good? I understand why Compromised etc could be labelled as Situations rather than Selfs and it brings me back to Seamus Heaney:

      “it is the marriage between country and mind that contitutes this sense of [self] in its richest possible manifestation”.

      Situation emphasises place, Self emphasises mind.

  12. Don MacFarlane

    May 19, 2012 at 8:50 am

    Back to the thesis then that being a good Celt makes you a good cosmopolitan. The good and decent habits and attitudes you learn on your mother’s knee travel well? Personally, I think Macquarie was flying by the seat of his pants all the time but he mostly got away with it till the last, and he did a hell of a lot more good in the process even with all his self-serving. A pragmatist and an idealist all in one, a rare mixture? There is no doubting his Celtic credentials in terms of his heritage. His uncle was the last chief of Clan MacQuarrie and the clan go back to Kenneth MacAlpine, first king of Scotland. Macquarie could have been chief of the clan himself had he bothered to put his case forward but how do you top being Governor [and ‘Father’] of Australia? So MacQuarrie invented Australia as we know it and his ancestor invented Scotland.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 19, 2012 at 10:30 pm

      As far as I know he sunk his money into restoring a broken-down money-pit of a castle back to it’s former ‘glory’.

  13. Don MacFarlane

    May 19, 2012 at 8:25 am

    It’s hard to know what the Islanders thought when they heard that Colonel Gordon was taking them over. His military rank may have impressed them as many of the islanders fought and died in the Napoleonic Wars in the Gordon Highlanders. Ironic then, that their time of economic boom when there was no need to emigrate was when their kelp was making the gunpowder that blew the French to pieces but it was also the time that some of their finest young men were slaughtered as well. As an aside, some of the opponents of the present Afghan war and conspiracy theorists might see parallels there about a war whose secret agenda was initially about oil, not about fighting Islam extremism.

    The islanders would have been less impressed if they knew that Gordon’s colonel rank was just for show and that he had never fought a day in his life – not such an uncommon thing in those days s money bought a military rank and also kept you out of the firing line. In Gordon’s case, it was not even a rank with the regular army as it was the Territorials (like the Home Guard that George W. Bush joined).

    As for his neglect (in the case of Benbecula) or abuse of forced emigration (in the case of South Uist), it was not out of penury or financial straits in his case as he died a multimillionaire from his wealth earned in his other estates on the Scottish mainland and the Caribbean. Some would say that the ‘forced’ labour of the Irish and Scottish Celts, otherwise known as ‘white slaves’ was little different to that of the blacks in the sugar and cotton plantations.

  14. Don MacFarlane

    May 18, 2012 at 12:47 pm

    Talking about Diffused Ethnic Identity, who could have been more diffused (confused) than Napoleon Bonaparte. More on that later but, in the meantime, one of my favourite artistes (Mark Knopfler) singing ‘Done with Bonaparte’. The track is better with Chieftain-type backing but if fed up with the sound and picture quality switch to his Berlin concert at

  15. Don MacFarlane

    May 17, 2012 at 10:59 pm

    Some Comments on Eileen’s Analysis of the Historical

    General Hugh MacKay

    MacKay came from the far North of Scotland, near the Strathnaver valley which was famous for the calibre of its fighting men who formed the backbone of the British Army. His two older brothers were killed under very suuspicious circumstances, probably murdered, and the whole incident was put under wraps. He could reasonably expect that he might be next and he got out and joined the Army.

    The MacKays were supporters of the Hanoverians not Jacobites and were strongly against Scotland becoming Catholic so he threw his energies behind William of Orange. He became a firm favourite of Orange and he could be said to have single-handedly could be said to have stamped out the Jacobite Rebellion in Scotland and Ireland. He then transplanted himself into Holland where he married into a Dutch family and he became an adopted son of Holland. Had enough of Scotland,obviously, by then. The Chiefs of the Clan MacKay are Dutch to this day.

    His identity-state of Foreclosure could have been brought on by such a tragic chain of events when he was still a very young man and he swung too much the other way, perhaps out of a sense of bitterness.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 17, 2012 at 11:14 pm

      Sir John McNeill

      The island of Colonsay was a peculiar place and it basically was a hideout and staging post for pirates and mercenaries who roamed the stretch of water just above the Irish Sea, the Minch. Colonsay folk seemed to be a very headstrong lot who didn’t easily take orders and these McNeills were what is called ‘blow-ins’ from the Scottish mainland overlooking Colonsay and they never seem o have been truly accepted. Sir John seems to have left them to their own devices. It could be that he left the Colonsay people to their own devices, knowing their propensity always and without encouragement or much outside assistance to leave the island in droves. Perhaps he thought of them as a ‘breed apart’ despite the fact that by association he was one of them, even if not perhaps genetically.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 18, 2012 at 6:53 am

        Colonel Gordon of Cluny

        There is an interesting collection of papers on Gordon’s own home at the Cluny Estate. In there, ironically, is a photograph of Ranald MacDonald of the Clanranald family and one-time owners of Uist and Benbecula before they were bought out by Cluny. MacDonald appears to have been in Gordon’s employ – ‘the first shall become last’ to quote the Bible.

        Even more detail on Gordon and his dealings with people can be found at Archives of Cluny Castle. In it there is a quote that Gordon may have been blessed in Aberdeeenshire but he was cursed in Canada, although that did not seem to bother Clanranald – he appears to have been content to work for Cluny despite the treatment of his kinsfolk. Cluny died with a fortune of well over £40 million in today’s cuurency so why begrudge assistance and passage money of his erstwhile tenants to Canada.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 18, 2012 at 10:01 am

        Rid Me of This Turbulent Priest

        Dr Troy 1780

        First Entry
        Propaganda does not approve of Dr Plunkett (Meath) as Coadjutor for Armagh because of a recent circular he issued to the Meath parish priests, copies of which were received in Rome; if true, they were certainly not worthy of a Catholic bishop. Dr. Carpenter is requested to state what the other bishops and the clergy in general think of Dr Plunkett.

        Date: 8 October I78O.
        More anxiety concerning Armagh and the difficulty of knowing what ought to be done. The Nuncio does not know Hugh O’Reilly, Bishop of Clogher, well. Propaganda has also mentioned the Bishop of Ossory, Dr Troy, and Richard O’Reilly, Coadjutor of Kildare, as possible Coadjutors for Armagh.

        Date: 17 Oct. 1780.
        Propaganda not in favour of appointing any Northern province bishop to Armagh; they think it would be better to appoint a priest and ask Dr Carpenter to advise a suitable man.

        Date: 5 July I78O.
        Cardinal Antonelli thanks Dr Troy and congratulates him on being appointed Prefect of Propaganda and asking him to assist by sending on information on the state of the Church, clergy and people, in Ireland.

        Date: 9 June 1780.
        Very grave charges have been made against Dr Coyle,Coadjutor of Raphoe. Dr Carpenter is asked to investigate these charges. A letter to the Congregation of the Holy Office asking if a soldier serving in the English Army, accepting or seeking promotion to commissioned rank, must make open profession of faith; by so doing he risks losing the commission.

        Date: 20 May 1780.
        A letter from Propaganda to Dr Carpenter requesting further information on clandestine mixed marriages in Ireland.

        Date: 30 March1780.
        Parliamentarians friendly to the Catholics are ‘strangely divided among themselves’ on the question of the clergy. It is hardly to be hoped that the promotion of Bellew to Armagh as Coadjutor would bring peace in Dundalk as the priests there will not accept him.

        Date: 4 February 1781.
        An address of Dr Troy to the Ossory clergy stating that marriage regulations are to be strictly observed; the abuse of ‘wandering priests’ is to be put down; marriages at which they ‘officiate’ are invalid.

        10 September 1781.
        A petition of Agnes McAnnalley to Dr Troy. Thirty years previously she married Owen McLoughlin who was concerned in a riot at Keady in Armagh in which a man was killed, and McLoughlin had to fly the country. Twenty years ago she heard he was dead. Being lonely and disposed to marry again she applied to Dr Quin for leave to marry her present husband, James McAnnalley. Dr Quin refusing permission on the grounds that he thought McLoughlin was alive. She and James McAnnalley, being tenants of the Protestant Rector of the parish, went to him and he married them. Since then the Petitioner has been cut off from her Church. She asks Dr Troy to in mercy restore her to the Church.

        Date 30 January 1781.
        It is publicly reported that Dr Plunkett, Bishop of Meath, keeps up a correspondence with ‘Milord Hervey’ (Protestant Bishop of Derry), and is also an advocate of the notorious oath. Dr Carpenter is asked to make discreet and careful investigation into these reports and to inform Propaganda if they are true.

        Date of Decree: 23 April 1781.
        In Armagh Diocese, under Dr Blake’s rule, there is constant controversy, nor is there any hope of the discord there ceasing. To stop the great harm being caused through this state of affairs the Holy See is appointing Dr Troy, temporarily, to administer Armagh, with all the faculties previously granted to Dr Blake. Meanwhile, Dr Blake is suspended from all administration, jurisdiction and the Primacy; a pension of £l50 per annum is being provided for him, £100 from Drogheda parish, £35 from Termonfeckin and £15 from the Administrator.

        Date: 28 April 1781
        Dr Plunkett’s imprudent expressions and his propensity towards the British army have caused murmurings in his diocese. Dr Troy is asked to investigate the allegations against Dr Plunkett. Are they really true or the work of ill-wishers?

        Date; 22 September 1781.
        Dr Troy reports on matrimonial legislation being lacking; despite the discord among the clergy, people were competently instructed in religion; he was dissatisfied with the arrangements for the education of seminarians; Confirmation had not been given for many years, so he himself confirmed numbers in every parish. The priests are good, bad and indifferent. They would welcome a Coadjutor but, because of discords, an appointment from one or other party might cause vendettas. On one issue they are all united – they do not wish a Prelate of the Northern Province as Coadjutor.

        Date: 3 June 1781.
        Dr Troy is grateful for the confidence Propaganda places in him and for the encouragement they and the Nuncio give him. He is having great difficulty, especially on account of the attitude of the northern prelates who are jealous and envious and,instead of aiding him, ‘seek in clandestine ways to make my hard task fruitless’.

        Date:14 July 1781.
        Dr Troy reports on his first weeks in Armagh and that he took possession of the See peaceably. The clergy and people have been respectful. He is embarrassed to find that despite the ban of the Holy See on requiring money for matrimonial dispensations in 2nd and 3rd degrees of consanguinity and affinity, this has not been observed.

        Date: 18 June 1781.
        Dr Troy reports that Dr. Plunkett and the Archbishop of Cashel are the leaders of the Gallican party in Ireland.

        Date: 31 Dec. 1781.
        Dr Troy has heard that certain prelates and others have approached the Prefect saying that to promote Dr Troy to Armagh would cause grave damage to religion because he had been a Regular. All know that he corresponds with many M.Ps, especially Luke Gardiner, a great supporter of Catholics in Parliament.The Milords and ruling class congratulated him when he went as administrator to Armagh and the Government recognises him as the pro tem Primate. He does not mind having lies told about himself personally but when, on his account, all Regulars without distinction are traduced, then he must speak out in their defence.

        Date: 14. January 1782.
        Dr Troy reports that In the coming session of Parliament there will be a move to make clandestine marriages valid and legal, but on condition that they are solemnised by a Protestant clergyman.

        Date: 5 March 1782.
        Dr Troy reports to the Nuncio that the laws relating to Catholics were debated by the House of Commons. The five heads discussed were (l) the possession of benefices; (2) liberty of conscience; (3) education; (U) laws regarding matrimony, especially mixed marriages; (5) the practice in the Army (oath to be taken by commissioned ranks). He passes on the belief that the resolutions already passed by the Commons will be opposed in the House of Lords.

        Date: 17 January 1797.
        Bad news from Newfoundland: no fish; the markets ruined by the Spanish war; the merchants bankrupt; servants, who comprise most of Bishop O’Donel’s flock, are all unemployed.

        Date: 28 November 1797.
        Bishop O’Donnell finds Newfoundland drearier than ever. When going to administer confirmation he was swept out to sea for three days and three nights; the boat was surrounded by icebergs and fog; eventually they were saved. He is over fifty and cannot bear such rigours much longer.

        Propaganda was suppressed on 15 March, 1798, the library sacked and. the College confiscated. The Pope was expelled from Rome.

        24 February 1798.
        Rome was declared a free Republic on the 10th when the French army entered. Some Cardinals were arrested but released later; the Pope was expelled. The French have occupied the Vatican and Quirinal and most religious houses. His Holiness, before leaving, nominated a few Cardinals to act in his name. All churches have been plundered.

        17 March 1798.
        Propaganda has been closed down, its offices and archives sealed; The Dominican houses have been suppressed; the Pope is banished to Siena. All clerics, secular and regular, must leave Rome; all church property is to be confiscated.

        The rest of Dr Troy 1798 to follow in next post.

      • celticknot226

        May 18, 2012 at 11:37 pm

        Hi Dr MacFarlane: Is this what led up to the 1798 Rebellion?

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 19, 2012 at 5:27 pm

        I don’t think it was ever meant to be a rebellion. It was just another ham-fisted attempt at reasoning with the British establishment that went wrong, much like the Young Irelanders ‘cabbage patch’. It was fronted by Presbyterians, with the odd catholic (Dr MacNevin), and they had very little say or influence anyway. What with the puppet Catholic hierarchy, led by Cardinal Troy, the only thing the British feared was the bogey Frenchmen. Then when the Wexford rebels took the law into their hands at Vinegar Hill, massacring Protestants right, left and centre, that was when it turned into a rebellion. Of course there was the so-called Battle of Ballynahinch as well but that was a joke. The Presbyterian United Irishmen leaders were horrified at what they had unleashed and the butcher General Lake came in to replace the genial General Abercrombie and cleaned the place up.

  16. Don MacFarlane

    May 17, 2012 at 7:09 pm

    Interesting thought.

    The more attached a person is to the country of their birth or ancestral home, the better that makes them as a world-citizen? The idea seems to have an inner logic to it which tends to steer one towards a variation on that theme – the more ethnic you are, the more cosmopolitan you are. That’s when the logic starts to break down a bit?

    Meanwhile, I have done my own identity exploration which comes up with the following:

    My positive role models are, in this order:

    Governor Macquarie 1.0 (maximum score)
    Dr MacNevin 0.69
    Me as a Celt 0.65
    Viscount Castlereagh 0.58
    General Hugh MacKay 0.54
    Sir John MacNeill 0.46
    Colonel Gordon 0.42
    Cardinal Troy 0.08

    The persons I most closely identify with (I see similarities with myself) are in the same order as the role models and are from most to least – Governor Macquarie, Dr MacNevin, Viscount Castlereagh, Sir John MacNeil, General Hugh MacKay, Colonel Gordon, Cardinal Troy. What do the ones I look up to least – MacNeill,MacKay, Gordon and Troy – have in common? They sold their country or their people down the river. What do the ones I look up to most – Macquarie and MacNevin – have in common? They rocked the boat from within the Establishment. Castlereagh sits in the middle and I can just about accept his selling off of the Irish birthright of entitlement to self-government and emancipation as that was the times he was living in. His vision for the new Ireland was inclusiveness within the British establishment, which is exactly where part of Ireland is today. I don’t forgive but I can understand as it fended off a French invasion. His vision,with Prince Metternich,in the Treaty of Vienna for a United Europe was very far-sighted and we have the EEC today. Viscount Castlereagh was also a hero of Henry Kissinger (not much of a recommendation, granted) who wrote his PhD about him.

    I do not perceive that home-grown Celts think of me as the genuine article – ego involvement is (1.72 out of 5), hence ” out of sight, out of mind ” and they think of me as half-Celt (0.42). Nonetheless, I have a healthy enough identity-state (Achieved) which does not depend upon being thought about as having Celtic background or traits.

    If I were to try to be more Celtic, that would require me to have been more ‘stay at home’, more clannish, more proud of my heritage, more involved. In other words I have become a lotus-eater, much as I expected.

  17. celticknot226

    May 17, 2012 at 12:39 am

    Hi Don

    I think I’m confusing myself again. For the 7 men we are putting in the grid from Ireland and Scotland we are only using 4 types of identity: Achieved, State Of Moratorium, Diffusal and Foreclosed. I saw I had a note on Col Gordon as being identified w/ compromised identity. Are we also using Compromised, Conflicted, Displaced and Oppressed identities?

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 17, 2012 at 5:34 am

      I think you have hit on something here. Compromised, Conflicted, Displaced, Oppressed and Reconstructed refer not so much to identity-states as to situational factors or external circumstances in response to which the person has to make an accommodation by alterating or not altering their identity-state. To use a clinical analogy, if a person were found to be in state of distress, appearing agitated or withdrawn, that is as much as a clinician could say until knowing the circumstances. If it then became known that the person had been subjected to abuse or torture, he would then be described as traumatised. However, the fact of being subjected to trauma does not entitle one to say that the person is traumatised as that would depend in large degree on the person’s amount of resilience or capacity to bend with the circumstances (as with those who were in Auschwitz to take Jahoda’s example).

      In other words it is the difference between ‘victims’ and ‘survivors’. This can be seen most clearly in my book in the ‘Adam Lodge’ chapter by Brian Boggs which can be compared with the ‘Lulan’ chapter by Angus MacMillan. In both scenarios, there can be no question that the voyages were tragedies but in one case the emigrants are portrayed as survivors and in the other as victims. This is a moot point in understanding the effects of the diaspora as the likes of Celeste Ray and Laurie Gourievidis would point out. Much of the reenactment and ‘memorialisation’ of the Clearances portrays the emigrants as victims of persecution, which in one sense they were, but a percentage (perhaps the bigger percentage) did not see themselves as victims at all and had grasped an opportunity. Which category they would fall into would be reflected in their identity state – achieved, moratorium, diffused or foreclosed.

      Not to labour the point, I should be a lot tighter in my use of terminology and thanks for pointing that out. I appreciate the mental effort you have put in, most people would have thrown the head up long ago! I will now have to rename the Sections, keeping the labels Compromised etc, but ditching the terms Identity in the Section headings. In my own defence these are parallel systems and terms used within Identity literature (Weinreich versus Marcia) but being used side by side does cause a lot of confusion, I can see that now.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 17, 2012 at 6:06 am

        I still have to describe how the identity-states or types are arrived at and I will get round to that. In the meantime, in answer to your earlier question, if a hundred people did an ISA and within the parameters of the grid, it is highly probable that their profiles would be different and unique to each but they could be bracketed into these four identity-states.

        As far as eliminating the confusion that you have pointed out, I have arrived I think at a solution. The Sections will be named Compromised Self (not Identity as at present) and similarly for the rest of the sections. You can forget about these concepts as far as specifying identity-states. This not a ruse or a get-out and it makes sense as regards Identity Theory as the following definitions show:

        The Self is like a snapshot and is a sense of one’s person being unique, separate but comparable to others. The reflexive part of the Self holds on to that awareness, even in the face of change. The ‘agentic’ part of Self acts, reacts and interacts, taking stock at each significant point in the life journey.

        The Identity is like a movie and is a sense of sameness and continuity of Self across time. The Identity continuously monitors self-standards including “how successful am I?”, “what makes me who I am?”, “what sacrifices can I make or do I have to make and still be me, warts and all?”. It is the job of the Identity to resolve conflict within the Self and to accommodate any redefinition of the Self required to adjust to new life circumstances.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 17, 2012 at 3:56 pm

        A very detailed account of Lachlan Macquarie’s life can be found in the Australian Dictionary of Biography. In it, as no man is a saint, can also be found some less savoury aspects of his personality but, even so, they barely make a dent on his image as a very fine man.

        A couple of Trivia on him:

        He lost out on the ‘golden harvest’ of kelp (the finest in Scotland) on Ulva, his homestead, which sold for a thousand pound a ton in today’s money and which proved to be a cash cow for the more shrewd MacDonalds of Boisdale.

        He put a virtual stop to birching, although this was perhaps on the foot of the scandal about the birching he ordered on intruders to his estate.

        He tried to put a stop to cohabiting and made RCS marry in the Church of England.

        He died broke and without an heir.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 17, 2012 at 5:00 pm

        Theoretical concepts that define identity states:

        Identity Diffusion.
        The degree of overall dispersion and magnitude of conflicted identification with others. In other words, how many people do you disapprove of and to what extent ie colloquially, “how many people do you have nothing in common with and can’t stand?”

        Ego Involvement.
        The overall responsiveness to an entity in terms of quantity and strength of attributes used to describe that entity. In other words, has the disapproval or approval a sound and proper foundation on the basis of your knowledge of that entity ie colloquially, “do you know what you’re talking about?”

        Achieved Status – able to get on with most people and feels confident and secure (high involvement + moderate diffusion) = gets on with most but not a ‘people-pleaser’.
        Moratorium Status – procrastinates, doesn’t take a stand on anything much (low involvement + low diffusion).
        Foreclosed Status – set in their own way, not interested in any opposing point of view (low involvement + high diffusion).
        Diffused Status – will pick a fight with anybody but never comes out on top (high involvement + high diffusion.

        The diffusion part of it is based upon differences in the top/bottom; in/out; near/ far of in-groups/out-groups we talked about before with the reference points being those historical figures. Still clear as mud?

        I will do my own celtic identity state to illustrate and explain the findings over the next few days. Any other volunteers are welcome.

  18. Mary Cornell

    May 16, 2012 at 2:32 pm

    Yes, Don, you are a passive instigator:)

    One of the reasons I am rereading the book, aside from the fact that it has been at least a year since I last read it, is that I am having trouble with the Dynamic Identity Grid. I understand the purpose of the Grid itself and I understand the components of the grid. The difficulty I am having is how does assigning each element a numerical value show “identity?” How does more of one and less of another place you in specific categories? What is the determining point?

    • winnie50

      May 16, 2012 at 6:35 pm

      As usual Mary misses the point entirely, yet smiles with satisfaction at her own cleverness, in a smile-face sort of way, just as she does in expounding on editing and publishing and her many other areas of expertise. No one dare step out of the smile-face zone, regardless of the subject of discussion! Why not change the topic to medicine and assure Mary that her contributions are as knowledgeable as Don’s, as accurate as can be, and just the thing to guide a medical intervention? To respond any other way would be mean-spirited, even though there would doubtless be unfortunate consequences for the patients treated according to Mary’s diagnoses. Her goal here, evidently, is to type whatever pops into her head, whether or not it makes any sense, and to be applauded for her insight so that she can remain in her bubble. Golly, there’s the specter of narcissism haunting this digital domain once again. Well, Mary warned us. With good reason.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 16, 2012 at 6:51 pm

      No point in trying to over-interpret the grid. It is just a schematic setting out of what at face value might seem to be reasonable elements to include in a model of ethnic identity (not just Celtic).

      To take it to a next stage would require factor analysis. Not hard to do but it would require an SEM method (structural equation modelling) such as EQS, AMOS or LISREL. For now there are no numerical values attached to the grid to show or to measure identity. That is done through a simpler and different method called ISA (Identity Structure Analysis) which can link up with the grid.

      In the interim I have hit upon the use of various historical figures, eg McNeill, Macquarie, Gordon and MacKay (in the case of the Highlands of Scotland) whose pen profiles might reasonably be expected to illustrate different facets of the grid. Then the method asks a respondent how he might identify with each of these entities. From that can be calculated scores for different aspects of identification (empathetic, idealistic, contra, conflicted), ego-involvement, pressures on constructs, metaperspectives, self-esteem and identity-type, amongst other things.

      Sorry for the excruciatingly boring detail. You would have to do a self-analysis using the method to get a clearer picture as to what it is all about. Clear as mud?

      • celticknot226

        May 16, 2012 at 8:26 pm

        Hi Don

        This is not at all clear to me! I think if you’re trying to reach the masses with this book I’m afraid armchair ancestry people like myself might not understand this grid, how the men relate to it and how to interpret and complete the grid. I think for your peers this is understandable because they understand what’s going on here. But for now I’m completely lost!

        My other concern is that as it stands the different types of identity described in the book sit as separate entities. Are they related to each other in any way? Is there a common thread that links all of them? What considerations are needed? For example in nursing school we had to study the heart: all the parts, functions, problems when a deformity happens on one side or another and the common link was how we would take care of someone w/ the different problems.

        So how do we look at all the components and come to a conclusion? I did read the conclusion at the end of the book which was helpful but I still don’t know what do do with all the information.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 16, 2012 at 9:31 pm

        Hi Eileen

        In fact I think you have a pretty good grasp of the overall concept. I quote your earlier post (edited in parts by me):

        “At the top of the grid would be the broad term ‘Celtic’, as used to describe people who are connected by a common language, landscape, loyalty to the clan, mistrust of governmental authority and military readiness. The grid could then identify traits and how the men (Governor Macquarrie, Sir John McNeill, General MacKay and Colonel Gordon) were perceived by themselves – primordial: as portrayed in the first column this would cover their history, race, ancestry, memory, narratives and symbols; or situationalist as portrayed in the second column that covers their dependency or attachment to location,culture, rights, folkways, religion and values. How others saw them and how outside factors influenced them would be covered in columns 3-5 on the grid”.


        [To me this seems to show a pretty good grasp of the concept but I differ from your description with regard to the specifics. The part that you quote from Jim Webb’s ‘Born Fighting’, where you refer to the essence of Celticity being ‘common language, landscape, loyalty to the clan, mistrust of governmental authority and military readiness’, cannot be what I referred to as a higher-order factor as it contains elements from each of the subordinate columns – language (column one, which I need to insert!), landscape (column two), loyalty and mistrust (column four) and militariness (column five)]. Also,it is unlikely we could know how these historical figures perceived themselves; the descriptions of them are being made by the respondents to the questionnaire. As such the descriptions made of the historical figures are more of a reflection of the respondent’s own identity-type, by virtue of the fact that there is empathetic (seeing similarities with self) identification or contraidentification (seeing differences from self) going on].

        Quote from Eileen ctd.

        “Further they could be identified by their identity types: Identity Achieved: trust worthy, if they had goals, if they could do well under pressure; state of Moratorium: increased self esteem, plodding, methodical; Foreclosed Identity: increased self esteem, unsentimental, unwavering and Identity Diffused: self centered, justifying. We could as you suggest identify who was an agent for change and who made the Highlanders leave (who was detrimental to the Scottish Highlanders). Then we could do the same for the men from Ireland: Dr William Nevin, Archbishop Troy, Ambrose McGuigan, Viscount Castlereagh”.

        I will continue this response in the next post as a separate installment later (small doses seems better for the present) and I will explain a) how these identity types are arrived at and b) what the findings say about the identity type of the person who attributed these traits to these historical figures c) how the identity type relates to the grid.

      • celticknot226

        May 16, 2012 at 10:45 pm

        Hi Don

        I’m glad you are going to put in the headings language, landscape, loyalty/ mistrust, military readiness. I was going to ask you how each of the attributes in each column were related. If a person has more attributes in one column does this help to identify what type of identity they are? I was also curious if say 100 people looked at the grid and did this exercise would they come up w/ different conclusions or would they be similar? I was also thinking that when your book is done a powerpoint presentation on line might reinforce what was learned?

  19. celticknot226

    May 16, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    Hi Don

    I found 3 UTUBE videos that people who are learning about celtic identity might be interested in. 1 video had over 34,000 views so a lot of people must be interested in the subject! The videos are titled 1. Celtic identity which looked at polarities in discussing what celtic identity means to people. 2. Ancient Celts 3. Phil Cuningham on Galician Celtic Identity (Spain); This one is about 10 minutes long. The other 2 are a few minutes in length. There were also many other videos about Celtic Identity on UTUBE.

  20. celticknot226

    May 16, 2012 at 12:25 pm

    Hi Don

    From an article on Wikipedia: Hiberno-Scottish Mission: “The Latin term Scotti refers to Gaelic speaking people of Ireland and Irish who settled in Western Scotland. In early medieval times Ireland was known as Eire, but also Scotia. a name the Romans used to describe Ireland as well as Scotland. By the 11th century is was known as Scotland. The Romans gave Ireland the name Hibernia. The Scotch missionaries in the early church history of Germany included men from Ireland and Scotland.

    In the late 11th century and early 12th century, the name Scot identified a missionary or traveller. As a Gael and thus monks of Irish and scottish origin were commonly referred to under the same, at the time shared nomenclature”.

    BTW: In high school our mascot was a Gael!

  21. Don MacFarlane

    May 16, 2012 at 8:15 am


    I think the ‘fix’ that would allow for the book to be clearly about Celtic identity, irrespective that the inputs come from different disciplines, lies in expanding the Intro to each section. Two things spring to mind which has probably escaped you for the obvious reason that they were not explained.

    I will give the example of the Intro to the first section, Compromised Identity:

    The first paragraph refers to the strength of feeling, even hatred, that exists to this day towards the three landlords in the Highlands of Scotland. A fundamental concept in Identity Theory is that antagonistic feelings of any magnitude towards a despised Other are a marker for some aspect of one’s own identity that has experienced offence. The degree of offence relates to what and how much the person has been robbed of. The answers to these questions lie in the chapters and could be picked up on within a critique, framed within identity theory, with the content of the chapter being the ‘evidence’. No need to tinker with a chapter then except for reasons of improving readability which can be pointed out to each author in feedback.

    The second paragraph relates to how the young male population responded to calls to arms, in large measure to spare the family the burden of extra mouths to feed as much as anything to do with British imperialism. Many of these young men were slaughtered for reasons that their families could barely comprehend other than misplaced loyalty towards their chieftains.

    The Gaelic poem is there not only for reasons of poignancy but to show how closely related the Irish and Scottish Gaelic languages are. If the languages are that closely related, of course the people are too, are they not?

    The English translation speaks for itself in terms of its emotional power and this from a young poet and medical student, not even out of his 20s, from the island of Lewis who died shortly after from TB. Jesus Christ!

  22. Don MacFarlane

    May 16, 2012 at 6:23 am

    In my head it seems to be like a kind of a Venn diagram with the usual interlapping section. One can be a Gael without being a Celt (as per the genetic studies) or a Celt without being a Gael (as in those who have lost contact through time and distance with language and culture) or can be both or neither. Me? I don’t know as I have not done the yDNA test so I may be a Gael without being a Celt. The remark about me being a Celt because I don’t like General MacKay or Cardinal Troy was a joke but I guess you sussed that!

  23. Don MacFarlane

    May 15, 2012 at 7:23 pm

    I see the logic in this and you may very well be right that the elements you have listed from the ‘Born Fighting’ source could be higher-order factors with the other components being more ‘downstream ‘. This of course is where it starts to become statistical or mathematical if one starts to try to delineate such vectors and it could only be proven by a technique such as covariance structure analysis. I know what I am talking about here as I did a Masters in Statistics and have employed these methods!

    The question as to how these historical figures perceived themselves is also problematic unless there were historical documents such as diaries they have written which could furnish such clues. Indeed there may very well be but this sounds like PhD research to me. My purpose in naming these people was not to imply that any identity states attributed to them were cast-iron solid or even valid; more the case that any attribution made to them was a mirror into the identity state of the modern day person who made the attribution. In other words a device or sleight of hand. As for myself, I identify least with General Hugh MacKay on the Scottish side and Cardinal Troy on Irish side. Both of them sold their country and their people down the river. In fact, if they were alive today, I would have trouble restraining myself from hitting them! I guess that makes me a Celt!

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 16, 2012 at 7:44 am

      Right to the nub of it as usual!

      By the way, how did your brother answer the question that maths wasn’t logical? Or perhaps his answer was too mathematical! Seems to me you have a very logical brain (a highly developed frontal cortex) and the maths part of the brain (parietal cortex) not so much!

      Anyway, whatever about the political and semantic connotations of the term Celtic, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. I will send you an Excel spreadsheet for you to complete if you wish or to throw in the bin likewise. It will be the middle of next week before I can do that as I think I will make some amendments to it on the back of our recent discussions.

      • celticknot226

        May 16, 2012 at 12:01 pm

        Hi Again! My brother tried to teach me math! He said it was all logic! I guess it’s all Greek to me!:)

  24. Don MacFarlane

    May 15, 2012 at 6:56 am

    This is being entered as a new post and topic and is an attempt to reply to a rather thought-provoking question from Eileen on Celtic Identity. It is appearing here as the thread to which it belongs has run out of space. In truth it has rather caught me on the hop and I am glad for that as it makes me think. Her excellent question goes:

    “When I look up Celtic, it seems to be speaking of both Irish and Scottish traits at the same time: loyalty to the clan,mistrust of government authority and military readiness. Both have a sense of nationalism for their countries; both have their own language, customs etc. When I look at the IDEX site I’m not sure how to separate the two. On the grid is there a relationship between certain traits: which are more Scottish vs. Irish”?

    Before I set the tone and parameters of my answer, does anyone else want to have a shot at it first? Perhaps in the meantime Eileen could say what the source was for what she has found already on this topic when looking it up viz. loyalty to the clan,
    mistrust of authority and military readiness.

    For my part, I will put this into the mix in the meantime. When looking at traits, I think probably the best authority is the American psychologist, Henry Murray who describes core traits (not specifically Celtic) as the following:

    Abasement – need or willingness to surrender and accept punishment
    Achievement – to overcome obstacles and succeed
    Acquisition – to obtain possessions
    Affiliation – to form alliances or friendships
    Aggression – to injure others
    Autonomy – to stand strong
    Obeisance – to comply or obey the rules
    Construction – to build or create
    Contrariance – to be unique
    Counteraction – to defend honour
    Deference – to serve
    Dominance – to control others and lead
    Cowardliness – to avoid pain
    Avoidance – to conceal weakness
    Nurturance – to protect the weak
    Rejection – to exclude others
    Similance – to empathise with others
    Succorance – to seek protection or support
    Understanding – to seek knowledge

    I think Murray’s list is incomplete and additional traits from the work of Erik Erikson, Frijda and others would have to be added to capture the essence of national traits; not to mention some reference to temperament, resilience and the stereotypes which were very much in vogue during the height of the 1800s Irish troubles.

    Sir Charles Trevelyan, who was blamed for his handling of the Irish Famines and was later lauded for his handling of the Highland famines, is quoted as saying “the real evil is not that of the Famine which is a judgment of God sent to teach the people a lesson but the moral evil of the selfish, perverse and turbulent character of the people”.

    • celticknot226

      May 15, 2012 at 12:55 pm

      Hi Dr MacFarlane: The article I found on line was from celtic_identity. I didn’t see an authors name. but there is a large bibliography at the bottom of the page. The author quoted virginia Senator James H. Webb in his 2004 book: Born fighting – How the Scots Shaped America. The quote is under the title Contemporary Celtic Identity: ” Pioneering immigrants to North America were Scotch – Irish in their origins. Their distinct traits (loyalty to kin, mistrust of governmental authority and military readiness)”. The quote is near the map. Last statement under Contemporary Celtic Identity. There were also a few articles on Celtic Identity if you go under and type in Celtic Identity.

      • celticknot226

        May 15, 2012 at 1:04 pm

        Hi Dr MacFarlane: Also from the Wikipedia article: “Celtic Identity emerged in Celtic nations of Western Europe following identification of the native people of the atlantic fringe as Celts by Edward Lhoyed in the 18th century”. “In the 19th century, Celtic Revival, taking the form of ethnic nationalism in United Kingdom, Great Britain and Ireland”. “After WWII the celtic Movement shifted to linguistic revival and protectionalism where organizations preserved the irish language”. “A Celt is someone who uses a Celtic language or produces or uses a distinctive Celtic cultural expression”.

      • celticknot226

        May 15, 2012 at 1:11 pm

        Hi Dr MacFarlane: I was just thinking that we see the word celtic so often now, on websites, jewelry sites, music, dancing etc. It’s like a brand. For ex in USA if we want soda we will say we want a Coke. In reality it could mean any kind of cola drink. Maybe this labeling is too broad a term and it’s overused and misused.

    • winnie50

      May 15, 2012 at 1:06 pm

      First, I agree with Mary that it’s essential to decide who the target audience is for the book, both for the coherence of the collection and as a selling point in approaching publishers.

      Second, however, as I understand the process of editing an anthology (which I’ve done), you as editor, Don, are committed to publishing the volume that you described in your initial appeal to potential contributors. While there are always slight adjustments to be made based on the actual material you end up with, it’s not legitimate to reconceive the entire project after soliciting essays tailored to your original plan. By the same token, it’s not fair, after the fact, to impose your “grid” as the organizing principle of the collection, when your essay was initially intended to be one among many. Rather, as editor, it’s your job to come up with a workable sequence for the essays that corresponds to the content of the essays themselves. It’s also your job to write or commission a general Introduction to the volume that respects the integrity of the essays, considered individually and collectively.

      Along similar lines, as Eileen noted, it’s not possible at this point to eliminate certain essays in order to produce the volume you now want to see in print, especially if you contacted potential contributors directly, as I believe you said you did, asking them to write something specifically for the volume as you initially described it. You’ve already posted a draft of the volume online, so you’ve publicly committed yourself to it. If anything is to be eliminated, it will have to be on the advice of the readers’ reports and the publisher’s editorial board, once you have secured a contract for publication.

      Similarly, at this stage you cannot legitimately require major changes to the essays that have been submitted. It’s all right to suggest that a portion of an argument be expanded, condensed, or clarified, or that a line of argument be added or deleted. And of course it’s necessary to point to typos, as well as problems with punctuation, grammar, and the like, as long as you leave it to the authors to make their own corrections. It’s always possible that you have misread the text in a particular instance and that no “correction” is in order. Otherwise, changes should be made based on requirements specified in readers’ reports or by the publisher’s editorial board after the manuscript has been submitted and evaluated.

      Subsequently, there will be a further round of corrections and clarifications suggested by the publisher’s copy editor. It is absolutely not OK for you to edit the “amateur” contributors’ submissions as you suggest you’ve done, by basically rewriting them to suit yourself. I have three essays in volumes published in England in the past several years, so I speak from experience here as well. This just isn’t done, either in anthologies or in professional journals. If you want to occupy the position of Wizard of Oz, the place to do it is in a book that you alone have authored; the material written by contributors to an anthology is not yours to do with as you please.

      Third, all of the above assumes that you will find a publisher for a volume that contains essays written in different registers for different audiences. I know you have an expression of interest in Australia, but in a way, the failure to find a publisher could be a saving grace. That is, it would provide a rationale for scrapping the project as it was originally conceived and eliminating certain essays. From there, you could start over, proposing two different collections – one that includes the essays by scholars, which would have to be supplemented by other essays of a similar nature; and another volume that would target a more general audience and would be organized according to the notions of identity that interest you, if there are enough interested and capable contributors.

      Fourth, I urge you to clarify in your own mind the reasons for your interest in celtic identity and the deep-seated desires and fantasies associated with it. In this connection, you might want to look at the essays in ‘The Irish in Us: Irishness, Performativity, and Popular Culture’, ed. Diane Negra, Duke University Press, 2006. From many different angles, they explore the appeal of Irish identity to people all over the world.

      Fifth, I encourage you to make a strong case, in the Introduction and in the prospectus you send to potential publishers, for the types of examination of celtic identity included in your book(s). How are they different from other studies of the subject? Why is the matter of particular interest in the current moment? What is at stake in it? Last, I think it would be unwise to say any more about the book online, where your comments are available to anyone and everyone, including existing or future contributors or publishers, who may well take umbrage. There could even be legal ramifications.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 15, 2012 at 5:17 pm

        Hi Winnie

        Thanks for that input from your own experience as an editor. To address some of the points:

        The Intended audience:

        There has never been any confusion in my mind who that should be. I am not a historian or social anthropologist so the intention was to bring a different perspective, that of social psychology, to the feast and for a general readership to consider.

        The interest in Celtic identity:

        This is nothing weird or esoteric as it is as legitimate an area of study as any other. Ethnic groups such as Palestinians and Slovaks have been the subject of such study, why not Celts?

        Shift in Concept

        There hasn’t really been any significant shift in concept but there may be value in giving it a sharper focus. The device of the grid may be helpful in that regard.

        Workable Sequence

        I am content with the sequence as it stands – Compromised identity, right through to Reconstructed Identity, as the sections. But still further clarity of explanation seems to be needed, even though the Introduction covers the ground pretty adequately and comprehensively?

        Editorial Board Decisions

        At least as far as I have been led to believe, the Editorial Board of the History Press were content with the book. The reason for the ultimate rejection after the initial interest was a commercial one.

        The “amateur” chapters

        The authors of these chapters have always been kept fully informed in advance of intended changes. Only one author was not that happy and I asked one of the academic contributors to give a second opinion. The author was then happy to accept the changes; otherwise the chapter could not have been kept as it was.

        None of these points are meant to dilute the points you have made but this project is on a different scale of difficulty to any I have been involved with before. I have found the input from this Book club immensely valuable and I see it as a kind of focus group. So I have no regrets about airing all of this on-line.

      • winnie50

        May 16, 2012 at 3:40 am

        OK, but generally the first thing a publisher wants to know is why the project is significant. When I publish something, I want to know in my own mind, and to be able to explain to others, why it matters – why I wrote it and why they might benefit from reading it. And honestly, I still don’t see how the grid relates to the actual essays. Of the six or seven I read, and the others I skimmed, none were psychological studies and none were interested in the question of Celtic identity per se. Rather, they were mainly historical studies of the lives of emigrants, transported convicts and the like, who happened to be from Ireland and Scotland and happened to be classifiable, from your perspective, as Celts. I hope you can see what I mean.

        If “Celtic” has become a brand more than anything else, as Eileen has mentioned, and if I had contributed an essay to the collection, I’d surely want the book to present itself as something other than a tie-in with a “family of products” (as the marketers say) that wear the Disneyfied label of Celticness. Like it or not, unlike Slovak identity, Celtic identity has in fact become both an international brand and an ethnic identity that has been successfully put to use in reactionary politics, in this sense: it is now widely embraced by white people who are hostile to the non-European migrants who have been altering national landscapes worldwide for the past thirty years. It’s a kind of flag waved by Irish who vocally resent the “invasion” of their country by Nigerians and Eastern Europeans, even though the latter are white and Catholic – a direct result of the Celtic Tiger phenomenon. I know that many of the migrants of that period have left, but Ireland will never be able to return to its pre-1990s insularity, except in fantasy.

        A comparable flag is routinely waved in the US by racist xenophobes who publicly sing the praises of their community, saying that it enjoys the kind of diversity that was meant to be in America: English, Irish, Scottish, and Welsh. Since the early 1980s, similar views have fueled the political fortunes of the extreme right-wing National Front of Jean-Marie Le Pen (of Breton Celtic descent) and now of his daughter, Marine, in France, where the party’s overtly racist and xenophobic platform won her 20% of the national vote in the first round of the recent presidential elections.

        I think it would be important to situate your approach to Celtic identity – which, again, seems to have almost no connection to the concerns of the contributors – in this semantic and political field, which extends far beyond Ireland and the Highlands and Islands. It’s an identity that has taken on a life of its own and that isn’t ‘yours’ anymore. This fundamental change, if it’s ignored, will cheapen your project and make it appear to be provincial. If the change is openly acknowledged on the other hand, it could serve as a springboard for new work that reframes the notion of Celtic identity in the 21st century.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 16, 2012 at 6:40 am

        Hi Winnie

        Thanks for that insight as the racist connotation to Celticness had totally escaped me!

        I have never really fully understood why the term Celtic can raise the hackles as there are University Departments on Celtic Studies all over the place. It seems to me to be a bit dissociative for Celtic to mean the language and culture and nothing else. I mean to read the books by Celeste Ray ‘Transatlantic Scots’ and Catherine Nash ‘Of Irish Descent’ again, but this time with a fine toothcomb, and check how much or how little the concept of Celticness permeates them. Then take it from there.

        I see there are strong views in both directions on whether the Dynamic Identity Grid should be inserted more into the book rather than just being a rather truncated and grafted add-on as it is at the moment. None of that of course addresses the tediousness of a number of the chapters and what to do about them. Whether just to shrug the shoulders for ethical reasons and leave them alone or to try to make a silk purse from a sow’s ear (with the full involvement of the author in each case of course).

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 16, 2012 at 6:54 am

        Hi Mary

        Thanks for that and for taking the trouble to read over the book again. I agree with all the points you have made and I will go over the book again with a view to drawing out what I believe are the Celtic roots of each chapter and run that past each author for their comments so they don’t end up thinking their chapters are orphans.

        As for offence, I wish I had Winnie as supervisor for my PhD and I would not have had to rewrite my thesis. I would have got it right first time. My professor was lazy and she had one eye on retirement so she just wanted my thesis out of the way to get it off her desk. Her assistant tried to steer me in the right direction (God rest Paddy as he died in his late 40s not long after from my complaint) but she wasn’t having it. By the way, if you have much of your family duties behind you by now you should consider doing a PhD yourself (I am not joking). My PhD was done in the twilight of my career and I had no need to do it for recognition or advancement purposes.

      • winnie50

        May 16, 2012 at 9:16 am

        Gee, Don, I’ll have to reply to you alone since Mary has just redefined website communication by claiming that her ultra-public remarks in this multidirectional medium are for you only. I hope you’re duly flattered. Maybe all of us girls should just endlessly defer to you, daddy, and avoid making informed arguments pointing up the internal contradictions of your project. I’m sorry for misinterpreting your invitation to take you seriously and pick apart the grid. I never should have challenged your dog-with-a-bone stance, much less broached ethical questions that I know something about. Heaven forbid that a girl presume to have knowledge and experience that no one else in the conversation has. That makes her a really bad girl. A conceited girl. A less-than-dutiful daughter. And it makes the other daughter jealous, so much so that she turns her back on the uppity one who should know enough to stay in her place. Second place. Behind Queen Mary. And daddy, if you censor my post, or edit it as you’ve done with many of my previous ones, I’m going to be really mad at you!

      • Mary Cornell

        May 16, 2012 at 5:53 am

        Dear Don-

        The following comments are for you alone. I do not wish to offend Winnie or you, as I believe you have a great deal of respect for her in her profession.

        I found her criticism to be rather brutal and certainly deflating. It brought me back to comments on the dismissive nature of the academics. If it is “not how we do it, then don’t do it” attitude. The criticism came very close to mean-spiritedness, stopping just short of it. I do hope you take it with a grain of salt and then disregard the negative. There are so many positives to your concept that it should not be “scrapped and started over.”

        I have been spending the last couple of days revisiting the book and I don’t see how using the grid changes the nature of the book and as long as the authors are kept in the loop and actively participate in the changes, I see no problem with what you are trying to do to organize this for the target reader. It is not simply an anthology. There is purpose to the anthology, your purpose.

        I am a little wary about how much editing you have done because that does strike me as maybe a little heavy-handed unless the writers were fully aware and agreed to the changes. And it does not change what they have to say. My attitude as the non-academic is that if someone takes umbrage, so what. I do not see anything that is so terrible that publishers and readers would run, screaming in terror. Maybe academics.

        Now on to important stuff. In your reply to Winnie, I found the one thing that I will disagree with and maybe the reason why the cohesion is awkward in the book. You state that you are not an historian nor a social anthropologist, but a social psychologist. Everything presented in the book is from a historical point or from a social anthropological view, except those things you put forth. Correct me if I am wrong. This may be where the rub lies.

        One final thought, when I asked you earlier about a Celtic conciousness, I probably should have said Celtic unconciousness. There aren’t any markers on the grid for it. It lives in the land of faeries and magic. A kind of cosmic DNA marker that pulls us toward it. That was the question I was asking.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 16, 2012 at 7:18 am

        Not quite true.

        Angus MacMillan, Brian Boggs, Carol Glover, Peter Gallagher, Merle O’Donnell and Vic Barnett are ordinary folks (well not quite as Vic is a captain of the aeronautics industry and a retired US airforce colonel; Brian is a mathematician; Carol is a mature postgrad who took her genealogy hobby to PhD level; Peter is a retired policeman; Merle is a freelance writer; and Angus is a regional developer who probably redrew the map of the South East of England) who had family history as their prime hobby. None of them come from a formal background of history or anthropology.

        Laurie Gourievidis is a professor of Scottish Studies in France who is much admired by my nemesis, Tom Devine. Chad Habel and Douglas Malcolm are specialists in literature, much as Winnie is, but in Chad’s case German and Irish; Edward Spiers is a Professor of Military Strategy.That makes a full half of the book is not written by historians or social anthropologists so it would be wrong to place the book in that genre. If it had been, I as an amateur would have had no part in it. Begs the question of course, what exactly is the book, so it does need a generic and not a specialist tag?

  25. celticknot226

    May 13, 2012 at 10:53 pm

    Hi Don

    I was looking for your book: Loosen The Knot. Is it out yet? I couldn’t find it. Also, when I try to find I don’t find anything except when I connected to hebridesweb site and saw the word celtic and connected to to celtic section. Am I in the right place? I know the sites under construction, but I wasn’t sure if I had the right place. Does anyone want to go through The grid and Celeste Rayes book: Transatlantic Scots? I also had difficulty pulling up the grid.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 13, 2012 at 11:28 pm

      I’m very glad the book ‘The Sea is Wide – New Celts from Old Horizons is not out yet’ as I have been having very good feedback from this Bookclub about crucial changes that need to be made to it first. An Australian publisher has expressed interest in publishing it but I won’t submit until I am entirely satisfied with it. That looks like mid or late June at the earliest now.

      The won’t be active as an address for a few more days and will replace

      The Dynamic Identity Grid is on the homepage of that website.

      • Mary Cornell

        May 14, 2012 at 3:59 am

        Before we tear apart the Dynamic Identity Grid-

        When you asked me before what was one of the most tedious aspects of the book, the Grid was one that came to mind. But…I like the idea to use it as the device to pull everything together rather than placed as a separate reading equal to the others. Then, the essays could be organized in chapters according to their appropriate Grid column in order to emphasize the domain it is referencing? In this way, conflicting thought on the subject, say of Resonance, are in the same chapter. In order for this to succeed, the reader is going to have to have a clear understanding of the Grid itself. Just a simple, broad understanding of the Grid.

        I also think that when the book is thought of in this manner, an imbalance in the Grid should be seen. Possibly due to the absence of those writers who declined to participate thus creating gaps in the Grid. This may help with the cohesion you are looking for.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 14, 2012 at 7:23 am

        Eileen asked whether there were definitions for each of the items within the Dynamic Identity Grid. These can be found on the Glossary page which is at the every end of the book immediately before the Bibliography. These are only generic definitions such as can be found in the Collins or any other standard dictionary.

        I like Mary’s idea of keeping more closely to the Grid when trying to give the book a better shape, rather than how it is at present, broken down simply into the present section headings – named Compromised, Conflicted, Displaced, Oppressed, Reconstructed – which sounds like a different system entirely. Or the alternative is to merge the two? Perhaps the ‘uninitiated’ would find the broader headings more digestible as the section headings but the Grid concepts could be used in a more reader-friendly way at the end of each chapter or section as part of the critique.

        I am starting to get a better grasp of how this could be done. I am still bothered however as to how to fix the most tedious chapters. I don’t mind how brutal I need to be as Editor, which is my job after all, except that there are limits to that. The academic writers would see a mangling of their chapters as a bit of an insult (and one or two have warned me not to tamper) so I have tended to restrict my more rigorous editing to the amateur chapters. It would be helpful if I had some idea on that as perhaps my editing has done more harm than good and interfered with the flow and readability of chapters.

        The chapters that have not been tampered with are Richards, Tindley, Kinealy, Spiers, Prentis, Wright, Habel, Gourievidis. The ones that have had radical reconstruction are Sheets, Gallagher, Boggs, O’Donnell, Barnett, Glover. Prentis has not been tampered with apart from the removal of some statistical tables – which is interesting in that Mary said she was turned off by the amount of statistical stuff. I thought I had toned that down quite considerably, not just in the Prentis chapter.

      • Mary Cornell

        May 14, 2012 at 3:06 pm

        I think that the target reader needs to be addressed. Who are you writing the book for, Don? For the academic reader or for the casual reader who is intrigued by the concept behind the book? A combination of both?

        Some of the more tedious chapters may not be able to be helped. Perhaps finding a position in the book where they do not seem so bad. When you are talking about radical reconstruction, what did that entail?

        I am also thinking , in your profession, Don, you are of an analytical/statistical/numbers orientation. Is that the target reader you are looking for?

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 14, 2012 at 3:33 pm

        Depends upon who wrote the most tedious chapters. If they are the Untouchables viz. the academics, then they will have to agree to the radical reconstruction or be ditched. The book is definitely not for academics and there may lie the rub as some of the prospective publishers who declined mistook that the book was for that audience. The purpose of the book is to bring the learning in an accessible manner to the casual reader. Chapters that are beyond hope in that regard have to be ditched. Although I did a Masters in Statistics I have no interest in numbers or statistics being in the book. I guess you must be referring mostly to the chapters from Angus MacMillan (a retired town planner!) and Prof Malcolm Prentis? The Identity Exploration method is loaded with Boolean algebra but that can be kept to an absolute minimum in the writing up.

      • celticknot226

        May 14, 2012 at 12:57 pm

        Hi Don

        When I was reading through the book, I kept wondering what the definition of each form of identity was. It wasn’t until I got to the end of the book I sort of had a better understanding of this. I wish I read the last pages first. I realize I may not be in the same place as all of you as you are all writers so I think I’m not fully understanding all of this! I’m trying! I thought the grid and the chapters were two different things. I think a better description of the grid and put into context of the chapters would be helpful. Perhaps we could discuss each of the people and how they fit into each value on the grid.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 14, 2012 at 2:16 pm

        Hi Eileen

        Here is an idea which you may or may not like. Why don’t yourself, Mary and Winnie complete the Identity Exploration test then a) the methodology of it all will become ultra-clear b) you will find what kind of Celtic identity each of you has c) it will be a bit of harmless fun d)it will crystallise for me where the comprehension gap is that will have to be explained a whole lot better in the book.

        It had occurred to me, much as you suggest, to place the Identity Grid at the start, rather than the end of the book, but I thought it would be too abstruse and would put people off. The more I think about it, it could just be a matter of taking care to present the approach in a reader-friendly and crystal-clear manner. I say again that I find your input immensely valuable; all the more so in that it is all totally unfamiliar to you. Thanks for using all that effort in grappling with it.

      • celticknot226

        May 14, 2012 at 7:40 pm

        Hi Don

        Where is the Identity Exploration Test?

        I was thinking about compromised identity: Sir John McNeill who was from Colonsay, Scotland. He was born into this poor working class community. They had just been through a famine 1845-48. He may have felt an emotion because his ancestors were on the land. He tried to help his people by establishing the poor law but at the same time he ignored his people during the famine by saying Colonsay was the least affected. He wanted to be in the in-group. He ignored the traits of his own people and switched them for the traits of the more affluent and powerful aristocracy. This doen’t sound like he compromised anything. A compromise to me indicates he uses traits from the in-group and the out-group to form a new identity. Whether this was for good to benefit the people or just for himself to gain more power and wealth. He sounds more conflicted. He doesn’t want to be a part of the poor, less powerful out-group. You said Celeste Ray did not feel that history, memory and narratives did not play a significant factor in determining Resonance; something that evoked a strong emotion. I do think history played a big part in his story. MacNeill’s history: his relationships with his people and the aristocracy in Edinburg were in conflict. He felt an emotion for those who were in the famine at first but his views changed. Later he just wanted to separate himself and cut the emotional ties in order to obtain wealth and power.

      • celticknot226

        May 14, 2012 at 8:04 pm

        Hi Don

        I tried to go to the link: but I didn’t find what I was looking for. I think the link was broken so I went to te internet but didn’t find it there.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 14, 2012 at 11:12 pm

        This is the IDEX site (click here) set up by Professor Peter Weinreich. He also has a book out ‘Analysing Identity’ but neither of these sources enables a person to do a test as it mainly seems to be a money-grabbing exercise.

        The IDEX test is something I have done quite regularly with people in clinical practice, pregnant teenagers who have lost custody in recent times. I have adapted it as a sideline and hobby to the study of ethnic identity and it is normally done on computer. If that is not possible and as a compromise it can be done an Excel spreadsheet and the data then transferred to computer for analysis.

      • celticknot226

        May 14, 2012 at 7:02 pm

        Hi Dr MacFarlane: I don’t think that this book is for the casual reader. The topics and the reading level is above the college level. I was thinking that if this book is a collaboration, then perhaps asking the authors to participate in a discussion of the grid as it pertains to their chapters. That way you could put in your point of view as well as the co-authors and students who could debate the points. In this way it would show that learning has taken place, not just editing the material. I know that sometimes when something I have said was edited it left me questioning why that was done: whether I was not on point, you didn’t agree w/ what I said or if I was wrong about something. I think the authors need to know why you disagree. This could be done in private as to not call them out on line. Perhaps a forum for a collaboration of ideas would be good. You could write how different authors viewed a certain subject.

  26. Mary Cornell

    May 10, 2012 at 2:53 am


    One of your comments started me thinking. A philosophical question for you- Do you believe that there is a Celtic “collective consciousness;” a reason to explain why the Celtic “pull” is so strong for some of us? You have visitors from Australia researching their Irish roots. Eileen and I are here in the States. Why is our need to know beyond the facts almost a compulsion?

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 13, 2012 at 5:36 pm

      I think it was to explore this question that I devised the Dynamic Identity Grid – see homepage of my celtdomain site, still for the next few days under its old URL of

      The first column, Resonance, refers to ‘the richness or meaning of an association that evokes emotion’. Celeste Ray makes the point repeatedly in her book that for ‘Transatlantic Scots’ this has little or nothing to do with history, memory, narratives or symbols. Any cultural reenactment in the US, Canada, Australia or anywhere else, meant to reinforce or bolster this feeling of attachment, bears little or no relationship to actual historical events which are invariably either unknown or misrepresented. Hence, for them what is left to give resonance is their sense or knowledge of Race or Ancestry. Of course, within a cosmopolitan setting such as the US or Australia, the sense of ethnic identity is highly likely to be multiracial in origin.

      I will summarise the other domains that contribute, as you say, to collective consciousness in separate posts.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 13, 2012 at 9:40 pm

        The second column on the grid relates to elements of the Markers Domain. Two sources spring to mind that speak to this topic, the first being the essay from Eric Kaufmann on Liberal Ethnicity:

        The second and more succinctly comes from Seamus Heaney, only substitute ‘sense of self’ for ‘sense of place’:

        “the feeling,assenting, equable marriage between the geographical country and the country of the mind, whether that country of the mind takes its tone unconsciously from a shared, oral, inherited culture, or from a consciously savoured culture, or both, it is this marriage that constitutes the sense of [self] in it’s richest possible manifestations”.

        According to both authors, the ‘thickness of criteria’ for entry or acceptance into that acknowledged (whether by self or others or both) sense of ethnic identity are of secondary or marginal importance, but presumably the adoption of certain sense of rights and values come with the package? Celeste Ray states that the sense of rights and values has been distorted by distance in space and time, so that eg fourth and fifth generation descendants tend to cling to the belief that their ancestors were victims of clearances even when there is no evidence to support it.

      • celticknot226

        May 13, 2012 at 10:11 pm

        Hi Dr MacFarlane: Is this like people of the Jewish faith that feel they are connected to or have empathy for people that were in the Holocaust because they have a common bond their religious faith, even though they didn’t have a family member who was injured or killed during this time?

      • celticknot226

        May 13, 2012 at 10:17 pm

        Hi Dr MacFarlane: In your identity grid could the word history include not just the actual events say 1798 Uprising or “Bloody Sunday” but a personal history someone has with a particular country. For example someone who had grandparents who were in Ireland during the Potato Famine and stories or written words were handed down throughout the generations invoking emotional ties to that country?

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 13, 2012 at 10:55 pm

        I think that would come under Narrative. Like the family story about my ancestor who was said to have been a poidin (illegal whisky) maker, whereas it later transpired that he was an emigrant agent who peddled whisky to get people to sign up to emigrate whie under the influence – a somewhat unsavoury character!

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 13, 2012 at 11:01 pm

        I guess, although I doubt whether that would apply equally well for those of other faiths as those of Jewish faith are assumed to have all come from the Holy Land if you go far enough back? I empathise on the other hand with people who were burnt at the stake during the time of the Reformation, whether they were Protestant or Catholic.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 13, 2012 at 10:21 pm

        The third column harks back to the first where Resonance is described as the ‘strength and meaning of an association that evokes emotion’. In this third column, the strength and form of expression of that emotion is explored further. The most obvious and familiar form is that of a sense of personal pride that comes from the concerted and perhaps team achievements of fellow countrymen. Without that sense of pride, the sense of national or ethnic identity is presumed to be watered down.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 13, 2012 at 11:12 pm

        The fourth column of the Dynamic Identity Grid refers to the in-group/ outgroup dichotomy but not on the basis of exclusivity. As with any other situation of rapprochement or belonging there are then further dimensions to be included as well as in/out which include top/bottom and near/far; meaning the acceptance or rejection of power dynamics within the group and the desire whether or not to stick together.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 13, 2012 at 11:18 pm

        The fifth and last column refers to the situation whereby the sense of ethnic or national identity is under threat and how the person or group responds to defend that identity. Is the identity of sufficient worth and personal meaning that it should be held dear, should it be continued in it’s purest, orthodox and traditional form, or is it up to negotiation or redefinition according to whether and how much it is exposed to different cultures?

  27. Don MacFarlane

    May 8, 2012 at 11:39 am

    No sooner said than done but you’ll have a job explaining it!


    • celticknot226

      May 8, 2012 at 10:55 pm

      Hi Don

      I was not thinking clearly with my first response! Do I get a second chance? I need to get my head out of the 1800’s and into the 21st century! I think this represents the child abuse scandal in Ireland. Ireland represents the child who was victimized by the nuns, priests and the subsequent cover up by the Bishops and the Pope. Ireland, The leaders in the cartoon represent skepticism. The leaders all had their moral code formulated by the teachings of the catholic church. Ireland has it’s roots based in Catholicism and like these leaders are also questioning the churches influence over the people, not for good but for evil. The cartoon reflects public opinion: can Ireland be impartial in weighing out what has happend in the child abuse cases because they are so influenced by the dogma of the catholic church and the pressure from the church’s hierarchy to cover up the scandal?

      • celticknot226

        May 9, 2012 at 8:45 am

        OOPS! I guess I failed the quiz! Is there extra credit? 🙂 By the way what are other people inquiring about when looking at your site and the book club?

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 9, 2012 at 10:20 am

        The vast majority of inquiries are still to do with family searches. The wider areas of enquiry from the Bookclub have not ‘taken’ yet but that will take a few weeks longer for Google to catch up. Outside of specific queries about ancestors, other topics that have been enquired after in the last few weeks have been:

        Famine Graves
        Huguenots and the Linen Industry
        The ‘Faithful Steward’
        Convict Ships
        Inniskilling Fusiliers
        Battle of the Boyne
        McCorkell Line
        Joe Biden’s Grandfather
        Orphanage Records
        Workhouse Records
        Ruari Og O’More
        Robert E Lee
        Emigrants to Jamaica
        American Civil War
        Duke of Wellington
        Farmers Strike in Castledawson 1823
        Tipperary Regiments 1850
        B Specials
        Australian Convicts

        The Daddypoll also shows that 56% of respondents think it important to look into the social history not just family records.

        On a different note, I am thinking of changing the domain name of the site to get rid of the wordpress tag and to capture the broader range of interest of the site than just Derry which is a bit parochial. Any suggestions? Something like but not as kitsch and that’s already taken anyhow. I am also thinking of shedding the Genweb tag in the banner as 95% of the contacts come through Google anyhow but the site will still have Genweb and as post boxes.

    • Mary Cornell

      May 9, 2012 at 4:05 am

      Winnie, Help!!

      News: 2 Feb: Lord Widgery, Lord Chief Justice is to make the inquiry into the clash between paratroops and civil rights demonstrators in Londonderry. Asked if it would boycott the tribunal, the Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association said: “We may well. This inquiry is totally unacceptable. We want an international inquiry by the International Commission of Jurists. Nothing else will do.” [The Times]

      People depicted
      McAliskey; Bernadette Devlin (1947-) [Devlin, Bernadette]
      Fitt; Gerry (Gerard) (1926-); Sir
      Kennedy; Edward Moore [Teddy] (1932-)
      Qaddafi; Muammar (1942-) [Gaddafi, Muammar]
      Mintoff; Dom
      Hitler; Adolf (1889-1945)

      Subjects: Civil rights, Committees, Prejudices, Londonderry, Reports and inquiries, Bloody Sunday, Northern Ireland, 1972.

      Archival reference number 21944

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 9, 2012 at 7:54 am

      Ted Kennedy and Northern Ireland

      Colonel Gadaffi supplied arms to the IRA and also allowed Libya to be a hiding-place and location of training camps for the IRA. There is no obvious connection between Dom Mintoff, Prime Minister of Malta, and Northern Ireland other than that he was a buddy of Gadaffi and recipient of the controversial Gadaffi International Human Rights Award. How ironic now to know, since the overthrow of Gadaffi and his Libyan regime, how extensive was Gadaffi’s human rights abuse of his own people.

      Lord Gerry Fitt was no particular friend or advocate of Bernadette McAliskey-Devlin who stands beside him in the cartoon but he was often mocked by extremists on both sides for being too much of an honest broker.

      The Derry Inquiry was a sham attempt to look into Bloody Sunday, superceded first by the discredited Widgery investigation, then more recently by the Saville Inquiry whose findings led to PM David Cameron giving an official apology for the actions of the British Army on Bloody Sunday.

      Incidentally, I was a doctor on duty in Altnagelvin Hospital as they brought in the dead bodies and the injured on Bloody Sunday. I was also a doctor on call in the Bogside during Operation Motorman when Creggan was evacuated. That was when I heard from the inside of the activities of the terrorist, Martin McGuinness.

      • winnie50

        May 9, 2012 at 9:02 am

        Wow, Don, you HAVE been in the trenches. When I started writing my off-the-cuff comment about the cartoon, yours wasn’t yet posted. I now see who the major players are. And I’m remembering that when I was in Ireland in 2010 the Queen was about to visit Ireland for the first time. Didn’t someone in the British government apologize fairly recently for the killings on Bloody Sunday?

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 9, 2012 at 9:19 am

        We have our two Australian visitors staying with us at the moment, one being an adorable 85 year old and the other is her daughter. The older lady told me two things last night: anybody who has no interest in geography and history has no business looking into family trees; secondly, she is a big fan of Leon Uris’s Trinity and from that she found that she despised the English. She expressed disappointment that the placenames in the book would appear to have been fictitious which messes up her mental image of Ireland. She herself also has in her family tree a family line from Durham in North East England but she says they don’t count as English as they were honest hard-working lead miners scraping a living who had no time to invade anyone.

    • winnie50

      May 9, 2012 at 8:50 am

      Are we speculating about the meaning of the cartoon?

      If I understand the reference material below the image, it dates from 1972 and concerns the killing of peaceful demonstrators on Bloody Sunday by paratroopers in Derry City. Gerry Adams (?) and Bernadette Devlin are presented as unreasonable radicals who demand that the North of Ireland be freed from Britain altogether. They are being mocked in the cartoon for their political hypocrisy. That is, from an Orange perspective, or a unionist one, they claim to be working for freedom and democracy but in fact behave in an authoritarian manner, speaking for those they count as their supporters (ordinary Irish Catholics in the North and in Eire) while excluding them from meaningful participation in decision making regarding IRA demands and forms of protest.

      The cartoon also sneers at their demand for an international committee to mediate a supposedly national conflict (but one which the IRA is defining otherwise, since it refuses to recognize Britain’s government as its own). Tellingly, the only international committee that would be acceptable to Bernadette and Gerry, again from a Unionist perspective, would not be at all impartial. Instead, it would consist of an unflagging supporter of Irish independence from Britain (Ted Kennedy) as well as two ruthless dictators who are universally despised: Gadaffi and Hitler–mirror images, ostensibly, of Bernadette and Gerry themselves, who have taken the law into their own hands and violently imposed their will on the people of Derry. The delusional state of Bernadette and Gerry is underscored by their view that the committee consisting exclusively of extremists is in fact “impartial.” I don’t know who Dom Mintoff is.

      Anyone interested in seeing a movie about the violent vanguardist tactics of the IRA might watch The Crying Game, with Stephen Rea as Fergus, a gentle soul who has become complicit with violence of the IRA, and I don’t remember who is playing Bernadette Devlin, cast as a cold, gun-toting, man-eating femme fatale, the female revolutionary you love to hate. In reality, as I recall, she usually resembled the figure in the cartoon and was constantly subject to the same kinds of idiotic criticism as Hilary Clinton is today: insufficiently concerned with her appearance and her attractiveness to men; unladylike in her shocking refusal to defer to the powers that be; uppity in her presumption to wield power and speak intelligently, with conviction, publicly, about matters of importance that are better left to men. In short, an unholy menace. Not that I’m condoning everything done by the IRA or by Bernadette Devlin. But in fairness it must be admitted that the British government hardly has an unblemished record in its relations with Ireland.

    • Mary Cornell

      May 9, 2012 at 6:01 pm

      I have to admit that when I first saw the cartoon, I had no clue as to its meaning. Even after I went and found the specifics, I stlill had no clue. After reading Don”s and Winnie’s remarks, I hope I have had the right “light bulb” moment.

      The cartoon is mocking the IRA demands for an impartial committee, though the original committee was a sham. Saying, is this the kind of impartial committee you want? Ted Kennedy who wants England out of Ireland, Ghaddafy and his friend Mintoff who are in favor of terrorism (by the way, what was the basis of the friendship between the two?), and I suppose Hitler, for the way he went about getting what he wanted. I am not sure about the portrayal of B. Devlin as a child, unless it is a statement on her naivete in the political arena being led by a “more knowlegeable” adult. It is a mockery of the English sham committee to the IRA sham committee.

      About the name change, is the site going to continue on topics concerning not just Ireland, but also all celtic cultures and Gaelic peoples?

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 9, 2012 at 6:47 pm

        What do you think, any preference with regards to how wide or narrow the coverage of topics should be? I hope this idea is not too shocking but I was thinking of picking up on Eileen’s suggestion on the ‘knot theme’ and of naming the site with ‘ceangal’ being the Irish or Scottish Gaelic for knot which also means attachment or emotional tie.

      • Mary Cornell

        May 9, 2012 at 7:27 pm

        How many people are going to know the meaning of the word? Honestly, I do not think I would have looked into the site if that had been its name.

        All celtic peoples should be included in the site.

        One more thought – Is there any way to highlight the current day’s topics? Different color? on top for the day? I nearly missed this last one because it was so far down the page.

      • celticknot226

        May 10, 2012 at 11:20 pm

        I like this one. I’m still confused w/ Bloody Sunday. Were Gerry Adams and Bernadette Devlin on the same side- Sinn Fein? If they opposed the IRA Why is Martin McGuinness not here (in the cartoon) or was he out of the IRA then? One film clip we saw said he was out of the IRA in the 1970’s but you said he was involved when all the injured came to your hospital. What side were the peaceful protesters on Sinn Fein or IRA? What was the spark that English government felt they had to stop the protesters? Don, did you ever want to write a book on your experience as a physician in Bogside Derry?

  28. Don MacFarlane

    May 8, 2012 at 7:37 am

    Unwanted Immigrants

    This cartoon states more clearly than the previous cartoons what the fears and paranoias were in the US about the constant tide of immigrants.


    Points for discussion

    How well-founded or otherwise were these particular fears?
    Were any particular ethnic groups eg Irish versus Eastern European versus Jewish versus Italian any more to be feared?
    Did popular opinions shift in relation to any of these groups?

    Also note that Uncle Sam has completely lost his belly since the earlier cartoons. Is He getting it a bit tight?

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 8, 2012 at 7:39 am

      From Celticknot 2012/05/02

      Hi Don

      What year was this. I noticed Uncle Sam has a different hat. Usually the hat that is seen in recruitment photos is a top hat. At a quick glance it looks like even though USA had an open door policy to let everyone it brought the burden of having not only to accept the healthy and skilled workers but the poor and sick.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 8, 2012 at 11:10 am

        If it is the latest cartoon, the beggar is not saying anything, he is just gawking at Uncle Sam. I don’t know what year the cartoon was made (Winnie’s query), I suspect the early 1890s. I’m also not sure about Uncle Sam’s posture – is he groping himself, and is he holding his nose, or maybe even picking it?! In which case, the beggar is entitled to gawk at him (shades of Jimeoin’s raised eyebrows here)!

        I know now after checking it up that there were different versions of Uncle Sam before the most famous appeared. I guess that explains his loss of weight.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 8, 2012 at 11:15 am

        From Mary Cornell 2012/05/2

        Eyebrows up on the “late night” comment!LOL My early morning posts are “Don” time. In Colorado, it was 10:00 p.m. So not that late!

        As to our recent cartoon, I think Eileen was referring to the words on the immigrant’s clothing and backpack. The ones I can make out are Sabbath Desecration, poverty, disease, and anarchy. Can anyone make out the word on the “ribbon” around his neck?

        It looks like the immigrant is wearing a yarmulke. And this was the attitude toward the Eastern European groups who started to come around 1900. The term “the great unwashed” comes to mind. The holding of the nose by Uncle Sam, was probably a true indicator of the feelings toward the immigrants who began to come around 1900, Eastern Europeans and Italians, When my husband’s great grandmother and his grandfather came over in 1902 from Italy, they were detained at Ellis Island until they could produce a train ticket to their destination. And from looking at the records, all immigrants had to have an actual address to where they were going in the US. They also had to provide the name of the person.

        To Winnie- It does seem that all of the editors of the Field Anthology are male. Maybe there was an unsung woman somewhere in the group.

        Don, I know you don’t need anymore projects, so this is just an observation on the site. With all of the responses on the Bookclub page, it gets difficult to follow trains of thought on everything we are discussing. Does anyone have any ideas for an easier format to read?

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 8, 2012 at 11:17 am

        The ribbon round his neck reads ‘Superstition’.

        Mary, I think you are right about the skullcap (yarmulke), I hadn’t spotted that. I read somewhere recently that when the tide of Irish immigrants started to abate and there came instead a big influx of Eastern Europeans into the US that there was a complete change of heart towards the Irish and the refrain then became ‘Come back, all is forgiven’. Suddenly, the Irish started to look very wholesome and desirable as immigrants. I will see if I can track down the source for that snippet.

        I think you are right about the need to organise the post material. You don’t think an Index would do the trick?

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 8, 2012 at 11:19 am

        From Winnie 2012/05/02

        Actually the Eastern European immigration to the US began to surge in the 1880s due to economic depression and, in the case of Jews, nationalisms that were all too often expressed in the form of pogroms (in Poland, Russia, etc). Many of these people settled in the tenements on the lower east side of NY. In PA these ethnic groups were already very present in the 1870s. The Irish called them all “Hungarians,” according to a cool 93 year old woman of Polish descent, whom I shamelessly accosted in scenic McAdoo a few years ago.

      • celticknot226

        May 12, 2012 at 9:39 pm

        Hi Don

        In the Lancaster, PA area the Amish and others speak Pennsylvania Dutch. This area was settled in late 1700-1800’s by German immigrants. The borders in Germany as well as most European countries often changed because of war. My father’s grandparents came either from Germany, France or Alsace depending on which US census I research. To complicate matters, they moved to the Faroe Islands which was owned by Holland. I know my ancestors were not from Holland, but they may be French, German or Alsatian, who knows! I went to 2 auctions in the Lancaster area, one Amish and one where the auctioneer’s father was from the area. Both auctions were in Pennsylvania Dutch. It was very interesting to listen to the language and to see the Amish in their native dress, although I didn’t know what they were saying! If you ever come to the USA it would be a great place to visit.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 13, 2012 at 7:28 am

        This is from The Guardian (a slightly left-wing UK Newspaper) Books Blog:

        “It kind of helps if, before you invade somewhere, you learn to speak the language and comprehend the country you’re about to occupy”

      • celticknot226

        May 13, 2012 at 9:20 pm

        Hi Dr MacFarlane: I’m not sure too many invading forces did this. Look at Hitler for example, he just pillaged the land for whatever he could get, including the art. He then brought them to Germany. I don’t think he really wanted to understand the culture, language and customs. he wanted to make a superior race w/ all the world’s riches in his grasp. He didn’t care about the people. I do think that if someone wants to move or “invade” another country they should take into consideration the people, customs, language and it’s history. One of our presidential candidates wants everyone to learn english as a primary and mandatory language. He thinks this will solve the problems of teaching english as a second language, cost of teaching a second language, job training, issues within the health care system where many immigrants are speaking a multitude of languages other than english. He was sharply criticized for doing this. I would love to go to another country to work but I know that I could not do this without taking into consideration the above issues.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 8, 2012 at 11:46 am

        From Celticknot 2012/05/02

        Hi Everyone: Food For Thought: I had the same thought about that it’s sometimes difficult to follow the posts. I think when we link to someone’s thought it puts the posts out of order and tends to make it confusing. I was thinking that if we scroll to the bottom of the page of posts and use the reply button there it will keep the comments in order by date/time rather than by thought.

        In later years if someone immigrated they had to have at least $20.00 in their pocket. On the ship manifests they put their address of where they were going in addition to how much money they had on them. Perhaps this stopped immigrants who came with nothing, were sick and had nowhere to go from becoming wards of the state instead of the skilled workers the USA was seeking at the time of the Industrial Revolution. My city in Massachusetts was the first planned industrialized city in America. It seems that with each wave of immigration a specific group is targeted for traits others perceive to be threatening. Even though during the industrial revolution had an abundant of jobs each group feared the new immigrants would compete with those at the bottom of the ladder for housing, jobs, and assistance. As new immigrants came in the discrimination for those at the bottom seem to disappear. As education became a priority and available to the immigrant their standing in society was elevated.

        Sabbath Desecration may refer to the Jewish community who respect a day for prayer and family. Like our Puritan ancestors did in 1600s. No work, housekeeping or cooking was done on that day. In the industrial revolution there was a need to work 24/7. This probably felt like anarchy to them. In USA’s drive to become wealthy and compete on the global stage family and religion were put on the back burner. This went against their moral code.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 8, 2012 at 11:50 am

      From Celticknot

      Hi I was thinking about Uncle Sam getting thin. Perhaps it’s the sentiment that although the USA has an open door policy that it is perceived to welcome everyone who comes to our borders because of religious persecution, war, famine, disease and poverty. In reality our outpouring of generosity also has a downside. Our hospitality is wearing thin or wearing out. The USA is feeling the economics of the situation: overcrowding in the cities, unskilled labor, not enough training for jobs, ESL, healthcare. All these factor into the discrimination of the newest immigrant that they are taking from the system but not giving back. It probably wasn’t until government funding was provided in these areas that the immigrant could improve their standing in society.

  29. Don MacFarlane

    May 8, 2012 at 7:22 am

    Child Abuse Church Scandal

    BBC has resurrected this matter which refuses to go away until Cardinal Brady does what will be seen as the decent thing and resigns as RC Primate of All Ireland. The Vatican Embassy in Dublin remains one of only two embassies ever to have had its doors shut. This was on the heels of the now famous speech in the Dail by the Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, who is himself a conscientious Catholic, so it mustn’t for him have been easy:

    The offence for which people are demanding Cardinal Brady’s resignation dates back to a time early in his career as a priest when he was a Canon Lawyer. In an incident reminiscent of the Inquisition, a panel of senior clerics with Fr Brady in attendance, questioned a twelve year old boy, Martin Boland, about his rapes by the later notorious Fr Brendan Smyth. Parents were never notified, not then nor later, and the boy was sworn to secrecy by Fr Sean Brady, later Cardinal of Ireland. Due to this involuntary conspiracy of silence, Fr. Smyth went on to abuse the boy’s sibling and four cousins while he freely came and went from the boy’s family home. The rest is history.

  30. Don MacFarlane

    May 8, 2012 at 7:17 am

    Tony Blair’s mum was an Orangewoman from Ballyshannon in County Donegal. What she would make of Tony’s later conversion to Catholicism is anyone’s guess. Ian Paisley’s mum was an evangelical Protestant (Baptist) who personally converted Ian to acknowledge his Saviour when he was only six years old. How that squares with the Baptist tradition that adherents can only become baptised into the faith as an adult is anybody’s guess. Martin McGuinness’s mum was from Inishowen in Donegal and she was an ordinary decent homemaker who had no known interest in Republicanism or extremism. What she thought of Martin becoming leader of the IRA is anybody’s guess. Bertie Ahern’s mum was from County Cork and she had connections with freedom fighters from the original IRA. An ordinary working class woman, these family connections supported the fight for a united Ireland and that struggle led in turn to the formation of the political party known as Fianna Fail. So what she thought of Bertie’s money-grubbing antics that led to the virtual collapse of the party is anybody’s guess.

  31. Don MacFarlane

    May 8, 2012 at 7:04 am

    Irish in America

    In the interests of fairness, this cartoon portrays the Irish in America which should favour US visitors.


    Check out this other collection of Irish stereotypes:

    Discuss this official response to Irish immigration:

    ‘We feel considerable embarassment and we need to coquette the community for a helping hand. How the community will answer the call, sickened as it is, we shall not pretend to say. Why have we been sent these people who arrive in such numbers? What we want is able-bodied labourers and household servant women. One cannot hire a tradesman but you must hire or entertain his wife and three or four children. These poor folks will remain a dead weight for a long period on our authorities and will deeply affect our best interests.’

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 8, 2012 at 7:20 am

      From Mary Cornell 2012/05/01

      I haven’t had a chance to thoroughly think through the two, but I would like to just make a couple of observations. In the dark clouds in the background there seems to be a menacing figure, but I can’t quite tell if it is a specific person. Noah only took two of each into the ark. Was this all the US wanted to take from each country? Does Uncle Sam only want two?

      As to the second one, the shadows seem to be of the four men as they had first come to the US. They had come as poor immigrants. They are thin and shabbily dressed. They have made their wealth and aren’t willing to share the bounties of the country that fattened their pockets and their figures. If we stereotype the German immigrants, they did not like what they considered the non-work ethic of the Irish, while they were taught to work from sunup to sundown, always finish a task, and they of course, like the English, were more intelligent than the newly arriving crop of immigrants.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 8, 2012 at 7:24 am

        From Celticknot 2012/05/01

        I was thinking the ark was like Uncle Sam is loading up the immigrants two by two to bring them to safety. The dark clouds may represent the dire circumstances in which the immigrants came. The brighter clouds may indicate the future that now the immigrates future is brighter. I didn’t notice the face in the dark clouds until you mentioned it. The creature looks like it’s reaching out to the US or it may be another version of the ill wind or sentiment that US feels the burden of taking on the millions of immigrants and the responsibility that goes along with it. The citizens of the US may feel they are trying to build America and opening our doors to the poor may take away jobs and resources from those who are already here.

        The shadows on the wall may show an feeling of burden. The wealthy business man wants to recruit a skilled worker. The larger than life image of an immigrant in shadow is the growing feeling that in trying to recruit one worker they have the added expense to provide for his whole family thus draining the resources of the wealthy. Without the skilled worker the American Industrial Revolution won’t be realized.

        The Puck cartoons editorialized the sentiments that were going on at the time but may have also have reinforced stereotypes and negative views that people have of immigrants. People blame the immigrants for their burdens in life. If someone is poor and unemployed they may place their frustrations out on the immigrant. In fact the immigrant often takes on the jobs no one else wants because of the low wages and conditions they would have to endure to perform those jobs such as coal mining and digging the canals. The Germans and the Irish came about the same time. They may have been in competition for jobs. The Germans were also skilled laborers but they may have been a little better off financially. Where the Irish may have had some skilled laborers but many were unskilled thus taking jobs away from the Germans providing a cheap source of labor. Just like China is doing the USA.

        I should clarify my last comment. I was thinking that the US and other first world countries should not be allowed to go to third world countries for their sources of cheap labor. This undermines the workers in the first world countries out of a job because they can’t compete with the low wages and the expense of making a product. There is a store by me that utilizes fair trade for products made by artisans. The artists are given a fair wage for their products. This lets them compete with one another but not undermine. Further it creates a better feeling between countries so they can work together. This may also help to end the stereotypes that are created when we undermine. The other upside is that we get to see and purchase products from all over the world and at the same time people can provide for their families.

        I should clarify my last comment. I was thinking that the US and other first world countries should not be allowed to go to third world countries for their sources of cheap labor. This undermines the workers in the first world countries out of a job because they can’t compete with the low wages and the expense of making a product. There is a store by me that utilizes fair trade for products made by artisans. The artists are given a fair wage for their products. This lets them compete with one another but not undermine. Further it creates a better feeling between countries so they can work together. This may also help to end the stereotypes that are created when we undermine. The other upside is that we get to see and purchase products from all over the world and at the same time people can provide for their families.

  32. Don MacFarlane

    May 8, 2012 at 6:55 am

    In the same way as was done with the ‘Carrickfergus’ rendition, here are three famous Irish comedians to see who goes down best, Dave Allen (Old School standup) Jimeoin (modern Northern standup) and Dara O’Briain (modern Southern standup):

    Dave Allen

  33. Don MacFarlane

    May 7, 2012 at 8:53 am

    From Mary Cornell 2012/04/28


    American cartoonists view of the Irish immigrants.

    The Stereotyping of the Irish Immigrant in 19th Century Periodicals

    Finally- the Irish point of view

    Weekly Freeman/Cartoons 1888 – Irish Comics

    Finally- the Irish point of view

    Weekly Freeman/Cartoons 1888 – Irish Comics

  34. Don MacFarlane

    May 7, 2012 at 8:47 am

    From Mary Cornell 2012/04/26

    I would like to make a few comments on the things that struck me as I read through the Maggie Blanck site. I, too, was immediately struck by the first sentence. The Irish lost 86% of Ireland in less than 170 years. Unbelievable.

    I found it incredibly arrogant for the writer to make fun of the Irish attire during rent payment. The audacity to say that the clothes were stolen off scarecrows for the purpose of making themselves appear unable to pay the rent is reprehensible. They were probably wearing the best that they had and their poor condition was most likely due to their inability to buy new clothes because of the exhorbitant rent that they had to meet.

    This leads us to “poor” Lord Mountmarres. It was such a shame that he had to live in that small 20 room house. And in 1880, the sum of £300 was a grand sum. I cannot imagine the kind of blinders the landlords had to wear in order to not see the abject poverty the renters were living in.

    The simple act of boycotting was a sound retaliation at the time, but it started to disturb me as the violence and retaliation began to grow on both sides. The Land Leaguers did not realize that their violent retaliations would begin to create unsympathetic reactions outside of Ireland. Having said that, then, those outside of the country did not have to live with the Coercive Acts that the Irish found themselves subject to and the hundreds who were in prison without due process.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 8, 2012 at 6:47 am

      From Celticknot

      I was also thinking about the photos on the Maggie Blanck site. The medium that was used to show the Land Wars and how the tenants were evicted directly impacted how public opinion could be swayed on both sides of the issue. The images, paintings, photographs in color and in my opinion black and white prints showed the viewer how desperate the situation was. This may also tie into the political cartoon that Mary shared with us. They did not have the mass exposure to TV, radio and constant news reports at a moments notice as we do. They had newspaper accounts, editorials, photographs and political cartoons to describe and change public opinion.

      The English showed that by using the political cartoon they could mock the irish belief system and that they did not deserve the rights of human dignity and their land that they were on for generations. The irish also used the mediums as described above to elicit an emotional response to the Establishment who had committed crimes against humanity against (at first) the passive, hardworking, multi-generational, family oriented residents of Ireland. The images brought to life the events that transpired and evoked nationalism both foreign and domestic for those who sympathized for Ireland’s cause of land ownership and tenant’s rights.

  35. Don MacFarlane

    May 6, 2012 at 8:30 am

    Happier Times

    Happier Times

    First prize goes to whoever can identify these reprobates and explain how each has been mired in personal controversy or scandal. Summa cum laude goes to whoever can go on to say what contribution each is said to have made to the peace process in Ireland, whether real, imaginary or fictitious. Note that the Irish peace process is being held up as a shining beacon for others to follow!

    Not just for this exercise, a useful resource to follow is the Slugger O’Toole website.

    PS I am more impressed with the bouquet of flowers on the table than I am with the
    people in the room!

    Also note that the guy with the pink tie is looking in the wrong direction from everybody else, which reminds me of the old joke. ‘How can you tell who is the psychiatrist in the strip joint?’ A. ‘He’s the only one that is looking at the audience’! Boom, Boom!

    While studying this puzzle, a suggestion is to glean from the image:

    What are the power dynamics being played out in the room?
    What do the seating arrangements tell us?
    Who is most relaxed and comfortable, who is not?
    What tell-tale signs are there from the body-languages?
    Who is the donkey, who is the kingpin?
    Who leaves the room most relieved or satisfied?

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 6, 2012 at 8:33 am

      From Celticknot 2012/04/28

      The assignments are getting harder! On the body language question: perhaps the three men on the couch are in alliance with each other. The middle man is ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair. The other two men are farther way and that may indicate they don’t have as much interest in the situation.

      The man at the far right is smiling, his posture appears the most relaxed and he is amused by the situation. The man in pink,looking off to the side may be nervous, lying or is distracted. He may be looking away from the leader (the man who is on the right) who appears the most relaxed. He may be looking away from the leader as he’s submissive to the leader or he is uncomfortable with him. It’s interesting he’s the only one with the pink tie which may also be showing his submissiveness to the other men. All the other men are wearing red ties which may indicate their wishing to be a dominant leader. Tony Blair’s arms seem closed and his posture seems to be stiff. Maybe he is closed off to being influenced by the others and that he can make his own decisions. His hands seem tightly held together which may mean he is irritated, angry or nervous.The first three men from left to right are facing the leader indicating they are interested in what the leader is saying. I have more homework to do!

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 6, 2012 at 8:34 am

        I can tell you who the man in the pink tie is as I am sure the others won’t know either. He is Peter Hain, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, no stranger to controversy himself but usually for honourable, if often misguided, reasons. He was born in Kenya but he became a South African citizen and a fierce opponent of apartheid. The big smiling man to the right and to Hain’s left would not scare him as Hain has had to deal with fiercer characters than him, notably Robert Mugabe.

        Peter Hain is not gay, as far as anyone knows and he has been married twice, but Robert Mugabe accused him of being Peter Tatchell’s wife (Tatchell is a prominent Gay Rights activist)! Hain was once described as the most hated man in Gibraltar for advocating union of Gibraltar with Spain. He had a parcel bomb sent to him by the South African secret police which failed to go off due to faulty wiring. He also was investigated for misappropriation of funds during his campaign to be deputy to Tony Blair.

        Finally, he is currently being pursued by the Advovate General for undermining the legal system in Northern Ireland by maligning senior judges in his recent autobiography. The pink tie is the least of his problems!

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 6, 2012 at 8:37 am

        From Celticknot 2012/04/28

        I think the laughing man is Former First Minister Ian Paisley. He plays into saint and sinner concept. He was a former minister in the Free Presbyterian Church and a leader of the Democratic Unionist Party. He was against homosexuals and wanted to have criminal charges brought against them. He was also anti-Catholic. He protested against the Pope of the RC church. He objected to “terrorists” like Martin McGuinness and Gerry Adams participating in government. The DUP – Democratic Union Party withdrew from the Belfast Agreement in 1998 when Sinn Fein was allowed to participate after a cease fire. In 2006 after the St Andrew’s Agreement Paisley and DUP agreed to new elections. Sinn Fein agreed to acceptance of the Police Service of NI which investigated unsolved murders, allegations of police misconduct and the police working in cooperation with the community and other police forces in England, Wales and Scotland.

        After these events Ian Paisley and Martin McGuinness were elected together as First Minister and Deputy Minister. They were known as the “Chuckle Brothers”. They had a good working relationship during the peace process in NI. Martin McGuiness was Deputy Minister under First Minister Ian Paisley. He was a member of Sinn Fein and former IRA member. He was second in command of IRA. In the photo he seems very comfortable with Ian Paisley. He seems to be in agreement with his policies for allowing Sinn Fein and IRA to participate in the government for peace but maybe not his religious beliefs. I think Paisley is the kingpin and Peter Hain is the donkey having not been honest in the Tony Blair election and his negative comments about the judicial system and judges. Tony Blair looks the most closed minded, He looks like he has his own agenda in the peace process. The IRA had targeted a member of the Royal Family and many targets in England. So he probably wasn’t too keen the IRA, Sinn Fein or Mr McGuinness being allowed to participate in the government but they may have realized that without them the peace process would never progress.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 8, 2012 at 6:53 am

        Here is a clip of the ‘genial’ old man in the armchair himself in full flow ranting about the person he calls the Antichrist! Previously called Dr. Ian Paisley because of a postal PhD he got from Bob Jones University, he has now been elevated to the peerage and is known as Lord Paisley of Bannside.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 7, 2012 at 8:58 am

        From Celticknot 2012/04/29

        At first I thought the man to the right was Gerry Adams but it may be Taoiscach Bernie Ahern who negotiated The Good Friday Agreement in which a peaceful and democratic framework for power sharing in Northern Ireland was endorsed by Ireland, Britain, the people of Northern Ireland and most of the political parties in Northern Ireland. He admired Tony Blair and he became good friends because of the peace process. He lost favor with his constituants when he told the in his pre campaign speeches there would be no new cutbacks the made the cutbacks in the face of a downward economy thus, loosing their confidence in him.

        Peter Haine the man in the pink tie, also worked on the peace process in Northern Ireland. His area of expertise was conflict management. and resolution. He created time and place free from violence to discuss the issues. He felt is was important to identify the leaders that would aid in the process. He maintained a dialogue at all levels: local, federal and international. He took risks to maintain the democratic process and emphasized the need to manage the multi-faceted issues despite the emotional reactions of anger, breakdowns and crises. He praised Prime Minister Tony Blair for building relationships with trust with Republican leaders and his devotion of time and energy to solve the problem and to do so in a shared way. He further acknowledged Blair for ending mass unemployment in the Catholic community which made a more positive environment for peace. I think he was a brave man to take such matters on in Ireland and abroad.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 7, 2012 at 9:02 am

        The participants at this meeting were from left to right – Martin McGuinness (with back turned to camera), Bertie Ahern (Taoiseach of the Irish Republic), Tony Blair, Peter Hain, Dr. Ian Paisley. Gerry Adams had been sidelined from these meetings despite the fact that he had, at the beginning of the process and much earlier than this meeting, allowed himself to respond to the overtures of John Hume who had set the peace process moving. John Hume would later discover that he had ruined his party, the SDLP, in the process – he had unwittingly handed the initiative to Sinn Fein and was given the consolation of the Nobel Peace Prize for his trouble.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 7, 2012 at 9:03 am

        From Mary Cornell 2012/04/29

        I am absent for one day and look what happens!! Don and Eileen are completely out of control. I was just going to cheat off of Eileen’s paper, but Don has already given the answers, at least to the identity of the men.

        I listened to the Paisley speech and came to the conclusion that the man must be seriously narcissistic or the very least, delusional to think he has “helped” the RC cause in any way. We might want to check and see if his peerage was also from Bob Jones University. And he was part of the peace process in Ireland?

        Back to the photo, then. Would he be set off from the others, not as the leader, but as someone that the other four would rather not be associated with? From the photo, I cannot tell if the others are exhibiting nervous or forced smiles.

        Is there a subliminal message represented by the flowers, Don?

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 7, 2012 at 9:05 am

        Back to the photo then, which is clearly staged. Despite there being daylight, the room is strongly lit from above as the strong shadow from the flowers shows. The photo is staged but the hilarity and laughter seems genuine. Someone, probably Paisley who is laughing loudest, has cracked a joke for the camera (despite his very austere and harsh public persona, Paisley is reputed to be very witty and personable when not doing his usual rant).

        Paisley has his legs splayed and is leaning right back in his armchair so he clearly feels king of his own domain (Stormont). The rest, even Blair, have to make do with being squashed into a two-seater couch. Blair is tilting slightly away from Hain and he is rubbed up against Ahern with whom he probably has a more natural sympathy(both being flyboys who can ‘fool all of the people some of the time etc’). Hain is the donkey, in the sense that he has no real influence or power and he merely does Blair’s bidding. Blair is carrying on the legacy of Margaret Thatcher whom he has placed on public record as being his idol, ironic though that is as she was from the other party but she started the peace process, not Blair.

        McGuinness is genuinely amused by Paisley, whom he genuinely has a good rapport with (this is a source of continual disbelief to everyone still). One suspects that McGuinness has a sneaking regard and sympathy for Paisley who has had a life-time career in politics but McGuinness it is who is playing the winning game. McGuinness is said to be very personable as well but he is extremely ruthless in getting whatever he wants, not out of self motives but for what he sees as a higher objective, United Ireland. McGuinness is a master of the long game but he may never see this in his own lifetime. This is a source of anger to dissident republicans who see him a traitor and they would kill him if they could get near him.

        Ahern is totally discredited since the Mahon Tribunal scandal and he has been shown up to be little more than a self-serving opportunist who has lined his own pockets and has watched his country slide under his watch into a state of financial ruin. This has cost his party dear and they will never see power again for at least twenty years. One effect of the bursting of the Celtic bubble is that even most middle-class Northern Catholic Sinn Fein supporters have no desire for a United Ireland in the foreseeable future as the Republic is in such a mess.

        From the map, perhaps a solution would be to partition off Ulster again and give the Protestants what used to be Dalriada, the North and North-East corner. I can say this tongue-in-cheek being a Gaelic-speaking Protestant myself!

        sinn fein support

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 8, 2012 at 6:51 am

        From Celticknot 2012/04/28

        The man facing the camera (to the right of Ian Paisley) may be Gerry Adams? If it isn’t, he also was important in the peace process and he was a Sinn Fein MP as well as its President.

        He nominated to the position of Deputy Minister the former IRA member Martin McGuinness. They had a ying yang relationship – Martin McGuinness was seen as the muscle and Gerry Adams was seen as the brains. Mr McGuinness stated he distanced himself from the Provisional IRA but Gerry Adams did not.

        Gerry Adams represented 12.5% of the people in Northern Ireland who wanted unity between Northern Ireland and the rest of Ireland. He advocated that the IRA must change its policy in using violence to obtain unity in Ireland. He felt that there were no military victories only a negotiated settlement between those who wanted Ireland to be united (in the minority) and those who wanted England to represent them (the majority). He felt this was not a military issue it was a political one.

        The IRA in his view could not be defeated using military force. He wanted to build a lasting, permanent peace. Up to this time there had been 25 years of fighting. He wanted all citizens of Northern Ireland, those who wanted unity and thosethat wanted English rule, to vote on the matter. He felt NI citizens had to consent to the issue of unity in NI. He advocated that all residents of NI whatever their position to participate in the process.

        Gerry Adams was influenced by Rosa Parks, an American Civil Rights Leader. He admired her because she understood the issue of unity and that the struggle to obtain it continued. She felt that the American government responded to Civil Rights Movement on a domestic level not a military one. In Ireland the British government responded with military force, not civil reform.

        Gerry Adams was a spokesperson for the matter of union and lasting peace to be discussed using civil reform. He negotiated for peace, Irish freedom and permanent peace. He looked forward to the new, peaceful and just Ireland. Gerry Adams in the photo seems to be happy to finally be able to negotiate with other leaders democratically the issue of lasting peace and a united Ireland.

        Also part of the peace process was to establish an independent police entity that would investigate unsolved murders, alleged misconduct of police officers and full police power in Northern ireland with limited role in England, Scotland and Wales. In the St Andrew’s Agreement in which the British and Irish government had to agree to a timetable for police sharing. The political parties also needed to agree.

        Ian Paisley at first did not agree with the timetable unless Sinn Fein and IRA met all the requirements in regards to police sharing. In 2006 Gerry Adams wanted Paisley and Martin McGuinness to be returned to power after the government was dissolved and a new government was being negotiated.

        Tony Blair was the British Prime Minister during the peace talks. He felt he was in a careful relationship with Martin MacGuinness and Gerry Adams because of their past indiscretions. He felt he was “a good-faith go-between” during the peace process. Perhaps this is why he is sitting as if he’s listening to what’s going on but is cautious about how things will play out.

        He spoke in an interview for the BBC that at times many of the IRA had differences among each other and it made it difficult to sort things out. He also wanted peace in Northern Ireland.

  36. Don MacFarlane

    May 6, 2012 at 8:26 am

    From Celticknot 2012/04/28

    Linen Hall library has a large collection of punch magazine. You can write to them and ask for a particular topic. Also I found a site called Irish nationalism. They have a 7 min film clip on what we were discussing how irish were evicted from their homes and other issues around this time. There were also several film clips on other topics concerning Irish nationalism. On the irish nationalism site there was a image page. There were few political cartoon. One of them was about home rule. A lot of the images on line were from 1890 and later so perhaps the Linen Hall Library would be helpful. I wasn’t sure what topics everyone wanted to study.

  37. Don MacFarlane

    May 6, 2012 at 8:09 am

    From Mary Cornell 2012/04/12

    Here is the article that started me thinking about the political cartoon.

    19th Century Ireland and the Cartoonists

    Roy Douglas, a cynic, once declared that Anglo-Irish relations were all a matter of trust and understanding: the Irish did not trust the British, and the British did not understand the Irish. If there is a scintilla of truth in that observation, it is surely in the interest of the people of both countries that trust and understanding should be encouraged. Cartoons are a remarkably useful way of doing so. The cartoonist is a sort of licensed jester. He can say and do things that the responsible statesman, and even the responsible journalist, cannot say and do. Nobody believes for a moment that his drawings are intended to represent a literal report of what has happened, and he is virtually immune from the laws of libel. Yet the cartoonist throws some very useful sidelights, not only on the events and attitudes which he satirises, but also on the assumptions and prejudices of the cartoonist himself and of the people for whom he designs the cartoon. In many cases the cartoonist evidently hopes to influence future attitudes and actions, and in that sense he is sometimes a significant contributor to the historical process.

    The Irish Rising of 1798 brought a great spate of cartoons. Striking drawings by English cartoonists portray the rebellious Irish as savages, but then – rather swiftly – as fundamentally decent, if somewhat obtuse, people. At a time when English sentiment was passionately anti-Catholic, cartoonists, like other people, could very swiftly ditch one prejudice and substitute another when it suited them. Whatever else the British cartoonists disagreed about, they all agreed that the Irish Rising was a thoroughly deplorable thing. Soon after the Rising was over, Prime Minister Pitt sought to achieve political union between Britain and Ireland (in which he was successful) and to emancipate the Catholics from various disabilities (in which he failed). Both issues produced many cartoons. They provide excellent illustrations of the arguments on both sides, for neither the British nor the Irish were anything like unanimous on the Union question.

    Another important historical point emerges as well. People often suggest that Pitt’s attempt to achieve Catholic Emancipation was wrecked by the obtuse opposition of George III. Cartoons of the early 19th Century, from more than one source, leave little doubt that Pitt would have had considerable difficulty in persuading the British people to accept emancipation even if the King had supported him. More than a quarter of a century later, when the Emancipation question was again pushed through to the front of public attention after O’Connell’s electoral victory in County Clare, a Williams cartoon shows Wellington kissing the Pope’s toe, while Peel holds the Crown so it can be extinguished by the Papal tiara. Wellington and Peel (“Orange Peel”, he was sometimes nicknamed) where certainly not crypto-Papists, and they accepted Emancipation most reluctantly as a political necessity; but such cartoons suggest that the Government’s eventual decision was fraught with great political risk in Britain.

    O’Connell himself was a highly controversial figure, splitting opinion not least among English radicals. O’Connell was at first seen as a radical hero –”the Lion of Ireland” – in Figaro in London; but when Punch appeared in 1841 he was savagely excoriated. One Leech cartoon of 1845, at the beginning of the Famine, represents O’Connell as “the real potato blight of Ireland”. Leech soon exceeded even this insensitive precedent in 1846, when Irish people were dying of hunger in great numbers, a beggar approaches John Bull, seeking “a trifle… for a poor Irish lad to buy a bit of – a blunderbuss with”.

    When the Fenians generated trouble of a more violent kind in the 1860s, the cartoons of Leech’s successor in Punch, (Sir) John Tenniel give no hint that the Irish rebels were anything but wholly at fault. In many cartoons of the time, Irish people appear with almost simian features. Punch’s rival, the Conservative Judy, sees the Fenians as a dragon assailed by St George; the ephemeral Tomahawk parodies that idea by a cartoon entitled “St Dragon and the George”, in which the Fenian dragon impales St George.

    By the time the “Land War” began at the end of the 1870s, cartoons were appearing in many countries. Thus it becomes possible to see much more clearly how matters looked outside Britain. While Punch and Judy alike have no doubt that the fault lies wholly with the Irish, the Irish World of New York shows an Irish tenant, supported by Justice, repudiating “the land thief’s claim”. Le Charivari of Paris was savage. England, dragging a suffering Ireland in chains behind her, assures the world that it is an “infamous calumny” to suggest that her sister “is not attached to me”. In the Weekly Freeman of Dublin, “Pat” coerces Gladstone to draft the Irish Land Bill of 1881. The Prime Minister’s willingness to do this was not accounted for virtue by Judy, who showed him feeding “concessions to violence” to the caged “Irish American dynamite skunk”.

    As the 1880s advanced, the Irish electorate became increasingly concerned with the cause of Home Rule. The General Election of 1885 was of crucial importance, as – for the first time – nearly all male householders received the vote, and so there was a real test of public opinion. The Irish nationalists contrived to hold the balance of power. In a Weekly Freeman cartoon, their leader Parnell sits in a box office, where he is approached by the two Party leaders, who seek “a ticket for Treasury seats”. He insists that the price is “legislative independence for Ireland”.

    Gladstone became Prime Minister, and soon brought forward the first Home Rule Bill. A Judy cartoon reflects that Home Rule, if granted, might extend beyond Ireland. Gladstone reclines, surrounded by admiring Scottish and Welsh and Irish figures. John Bull, with three limbs amputated, views the proceedings with dismay. In the event, ninety one of Gladstone’s putative followers rebelled, and the Bill was defeated, so Gladstone called for another General Election. The Berlin Kladderadatsch shows the House of Commons, as tenant, protesting to Gladstone, the landlord, that Home Rule was not in the contract. The Prime Minister retorts that, in the event, he will seek another tenant.

    The upshot was victory for the “Unionist” opponents of Home Rule; but in that election an important new factor appeared – the discovery, or invention, of “Ulster Unionism”, in which Lord Randolph Churchill played a major part. The Weekly News of Dublin shows Churchill, bearing a blazing torch, encouraging the demon of religious strife, who carries the inflammable load of “political petroleum”, “bigotry ” and “hatred”.

    The incredible end of the Parnell story dominated the turn of the decade. When The Times was shown to have published a libellous forgery purporting to emanate from the Irish leaders, even Punch laughed at the “penance” which the newspaper was compelled to perform. But the O’Shea case, with its revelation of Parnell’s adultery, produced a much more divided response, most notably in Ireland. In December 1890, United Ireland shows Hibernia and most of the Irish leaders looking in the direction of “Ireland and liberty”, while Parnell points in the direction “For Parnell”. A few days later, Parnell seized control of the newspaper, and the very next week’s cartoon shows “the Chief” in a heroic pose. For the few months of his life which remained to him, and for years after his death, the savage disputes between Parnellite and anti-Parnellite Nationalists attracted the attention of cartoonists in both Ireland and Britain.

    At the end of the century, many Irish Nationalist cartoons recall nostalgically the centenary of the 1798 rising. When one reads the Irish newspapers of the period, and particularly when one studies the cartoons, the intensity of this feeling is emphasised. Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations of 1897 proved a sort of curtain raiser. In the Weekly Freeman, Britannia invites Erin to join in her jubilation. Erin, pointing to the graves of the heroes of the rising, retorts, “No! My place is here.” All kinds of consequences flowed, in the short and the long term, and a great spate of cartoons was to show the vast changes in attitudes, in Britain and in Ireland alike, as the new century advanced.

  38. Don MacFarlane

    May 4, 2012 at 6:37 am

    Mary Cornell 2012/04/23

    Okay, guys-

    I took a much more simplistic view of the cartoon. The English artist used the symbolism of “the Tempest” to set forth his views on Ireland for dramatic effect. What I see in the cartoon is the people of Ireland represented by Caliban, and I am assuming that the beautiful Hibernia is the Island of Ireland, with Hibernia safely tucked in the arms of the English and their Irish land Bill. The message saying that the Irish (the Fenians, Caliban, Rory of the Hills) were much too Neanderthal and animalistic to govern themselves. Only the wise and knowing England (Prospero) can govern Ireland and keep it safe from the Irish monster.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 4, 2012 at 6:38 am

      From Celticknot 2012/04/24

      I liked your response that Prospero was England and he was also showing dominance over the Irish by using the Irish Land Bill that favored the landlords. It put the tenants at a disadvantage of not being able to pay the rent because of excessive rent increases and the tenant was then evicted. Thanks Mary for the brain teaser!

      I liked your response that Prospero was England and he was also showing dominance over the Irish by using the Irish Land Bill that favored the landlords. It put the tenants at a disadvantage of not being able to pay the rent because of excessive rent increases and the tenant was then evicted. Thanks Mary for the brain teaser!

      I was thinking about the word Tramontan that is on Caliban’s clothing. It may be referring not so much to a Northern wind but an ill wind that is coming from England and passing over Ireland. The ill wind metaphor may describe all the punitive laws that England placed on Ireland to execute its dominance as a world power (imperialism).

      I was thinking about the word Tramontan that is on Caliban’s clothing. It may be referring not so much to a Northern wind but an ill wind that is coming from England and passing over Ireland. The ill wind metaphor may describe all the punitive laws that England placed on Ireland to execute its dominance as a world power (imperialism).

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 4, 2012 at 6:41 am

        Just the cartoon as it has a few layers yet to be unravelled, Ultramontism (not Tramontan as I understand it) on the ogre’s sash being one. Though I like the notion of the ill wind, I actually think the allusion refers to something else? Also, it appears to me from the ogre’s body language that his ire and his whole posture is addressed towards the cleric, with one hand opened up begging and the other a closed fist – shades of ‘the bullet and the ballot box’ there? Also, why does he not just snatch the fair maid – what magical powers of protection does the cleric have? Who is the cleric anyway, Protestant seems obvious but is he? Also, the whole notion of the female personification of Ireland and of the ‘Injured Lady’? And so it goes on …

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 4, 2012 at 6:58 am

        I think it was Mary who suggested that England was being represented by Prospero. It had already occurred to me on reflection to question why Caliban should feel the need to wear an Ultramontanism sash and why would Britain (Prospero?) be dressed up as a cleric? I think it all goes to the heart of the relationship between nation-state and Church.

        As long as Britain had only to deal with Ireland while still not a nation-state, and a puppet head of the Catholic Church in Ireland such as Cardinal Thomas Troy, there was less to fear. Before the United Irish Rebellion the Irish Parliament had offered full citizenship to Irish Catholics if they denied the papacy’s ‘temporal or civil jurisdiction, power, superiority or pre-eminence in Ireland’. The unpredictable Cardinal Troy agreed to these terms to keep on the right side of the British establishment, so weakening the influence of the Catholic Church in Ireland. But Cardinal Cullen was a completely different kettle of fish.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 4, 2012 at 6:43 am

      From Winnie 20/04/24

      I’ve clearly fallen behind. On the Punch cartoon, I agree with Mary’s interpretation and would just like to make some related points. First, the ape-like figure is wearing a tool belt, which alludes to his laboring-class identity. He is as “Irish” as the gracious figure of Hibernia but is demonized rather than idealized.

      Second, the destructive bestial power attributed to the Irish laboring class mirrors that attributed by the imperial forces to nearly all colonized peoples in Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean. The fear of their power was well-founded insofar as they vastly outnumbered landowners and rulers, and could very likely have staged an effective revolt with the necessary political organization and economic support. Evidence for this had been amply supplied in the form of slave revolts in the US, Haiti, Guadeloupe, Jamaica, Cuba, etc. throughout the 18th c. The Haitian revolts culminated in the ousting of Napoleon’s army and the French colonial rulers, as well as the declaration of the world’s first black republic in 1804. Ever since C.L.R. James published The Black Jacobins in 1939, historians have taken seriously the claim that the French Revolution may well have been inspired by slave revolts in Haiti, rather than the other way around–with the major exception that most French people, revolutionary or not, considered racial slavery an abomination only in connection with the slave TRADE–not with the use of slave labor–in the colonies.

      Which brings me to the queries about Irish immigrants’ support for African slavery in the US, whether or not they happened to live in the South. The standard response in the fields of labor history and postcolonial studies is that however much the Irish may have been oppressed, colonized, and reviled by the British, their whiteness crucially distinguished them from and positioned them favorably in relation to other colonized peoples. True, from the famine years into the 1880s Irish laborers were among the poorest people in the US. They therefore feared the consequences of the abolition of slavery because of the economic competition they would face once freed slaves became eligible for paid employment. But historians such as Alexander Saxon in The Rise of the White Republic and David Roediger in many studies have argued convincingly that despite their “low” class status, the American Irish benefitted economically, politically, and socially by virtue of being white, and took some comfort in the knowledge that at least one key US social group was positioned far beneath them. (The 1884 Chinese Exclusion Act sanctioned longstanding prejudice against the Chinese who, among other things, worked alongside the Irish in building the transcontinental railroad.)

      Later, French political theorists like Etienne Balibar applied this insight on the function of race in “democracies” in their study of Jacobin nationalism and its legacies in France. Balibar pointed out that since the end of WW II, class differences in all wealthy postindustrial societies have become increasingly racialized and ethnicized (meaning that the ranks of the poor and working class were occupied disproportionately by racial and ethnic minorities, often immigrants from former colonies (eg Algerians and Senegalese in France, West Indians and Pakistanis in Britain). In the postwar period too the Irish benefitted from being white and European.

      It’s sobering to consider that the notion of human rights is a very recent one linked to globalization. Even “the rights of man” as they were invoked in the founding US and French republican documents were very new, having been conceived in their modern form only in the course of the Enlightenment during the 18th c. The dominant view under the pre-democratic Old Regime was that royals and aristocrats were inherently superior beings whose power and privilege were ordained by God. As a matter of divine will, it was thought to be good and right that they be served by those in the merchant class and the “lower orders.” While late-18th c. democratic forces championed equal civil rights for all (eg the right to defend oneself against legal charges of which one had been informed, and the right to a trial by jury), “the people”–not to mention women–were not originally intended by Danton, Marat, Thomas Jefferson & Co to have political rights such as the right to vote; only male owners of a certain amount of real property qualified as full citizens. Moreover Jefferson envisaged only gradual emancipation of slaves, who in his estimation needed to be civilized by whites before they could meaningfully participate in the republic. Freed male slaves did get the right to vote after the Civil War, but US women got it only in 1921, and Native Americans in 1928.

      I guess my point is that in the past and in the present, the ideals of human equality and social justice were not/are not universally accepted in principle, although even the most cynical power brokers generally pay lip service to the ideal of equal opportunity. The promises of democracy have never been fulfilled for vast numbers of people. In today’s wealthy countries, the disenfranchised are mainly the poor and immigrants, most of whom are people of color. Increasingly, the middle class is also becoming disenfranchised. Woe to anyone in the US who makes an issue of this in public: they’ll immediately be denounced as fomenting “class warfare.” While there certainly are many evangelicals and other conservatives who are convulsed by the “immoral” behavior of politicians and government workers, I think the inordinate attention devoted to immorality in recent decades is, more than anything, a cynical strategy of the mainstream media, the government, and the corporations to divert attention from fundamental concerns. From their point of view, so much the better if people obsess over Secret Service men dallying with prostitutes, rather than focusing on the infinitely more significant criminal actions of the banks, the financiers, the superpacs, the corporate-controlled legislators, the right-wing Supreme Court Justices, and the rest.

      An aside: it’s interesting to see that The Tempest was mobilized to ridicule the Irish, because much later it was taken up by the Martinican anticolonial writer Aimé Césaire in his play, A Tempest, as well as in many Latin American writers’ and critics’ reflections on European colonialism and its cultural legacies, eg the generalized sense of cultural inferiority in the Americas. Needless to say, in these texts from the 1960s and 70s, Caliban is the hero.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 4, 2012 at 6:49 am

        From Celticknot 2012/04/23

        The people of Ireland feel they have the right to own Ireland because they were born there. The cartoon is critical of the people of Ireland because of their beliefs in witches, fairies and mythological beings to explain events that happened to them. England also feared that France would form an alliance with Ireland and invade Ireland. England wanted to take over Ireland and feared France would bring with them the Catholic church and its hierarchy.

        Prospero is the desire or the greed by England to take over Ireland. Its weapon is to defeat the monster, Ireland, and more importantly the Catholic church. England’s magic was the skill in writing thousands of laws that prevented the Irish people from owning the land they had been on for centuries. The English feared Ireland’s union with France which also came from a history of believing in the supernatural and which was now Catholic like Ireland. England did not want the RC church and its Pope to influence the people of Ireland and France. It feared an invasion from France and with that a loss of their land. England was conquering every land mass it could to own all the land in the world. England owned twenty per cent of the landmass in the world at this time.

        The cartoon also describes England’s attempts at taking over what was not theirs (Ireland). In the play the Tempest the witch was banished to another part of the island and pleads with her son to rescue her. This may indicate Ireland pleading with her “sons” (her people) to free her from England’s stronghold over Ireland. The witch might also give “voice to her people” and assist the citizens of Ireland in their attempts at recovery from the effects of famine, inhumanity and persecution.

        The word written on the clothing of Ireland’s son refers to a great Northern wind and reflects England’s belief that the people of Ireland took recourse in superstition and myth to defend their country, whereas England had refinement in language, law and culture. So Irish citizens did not deserve to live there or have any rights. I couldn’t read the word on the woman’s clothing.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 4, 2012 at 6:51 am

        I am impressed and your knowledge of Shakespeare far exceeds mine. There is a further nuance to this which I will feed back on once Mary and Winnie have had a chance to give their interpretation. I think the sash on the woman’s clothing says ‘Hibernia’ – that might give a clue to the piece of interpretation that you are missing? Also, notice that the cleric’s staff has ‘Irish Land Bill’ written down its side. I wouldn’t rack your brains too much on it however as the solution is a bit esoteric to say the least.

        The keywords that came with the cartoon include:

        Caliban, Prospero, Irish Land Act 1870, William Gladstone, ultramontanism, Whigs, Bright Clauses, Imperialism, Miranda, subhuman, monsters, Rory of the Hills, Fenians, Irish Land Bills.

        Some apt and famous lines from The Tempest:

        I would give a thousand furlongs of sea for an acre of barren ground.

        He receives comfort like cold porridge.

        How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world, That has such people in’t!

        We are such stuff as dreams are made on.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 4, 2012 at 6:53 am

        Without going into it all in too much detail but giving additional pointers from the cartoon for further reading by whomsoever is so minded:

        Ultramontism refers to the notion of papal infallibility, developed by Cardinal Cullen of Dublin, a favourite of the Curia, who is largely credited with the Renewal of the Catholic Church in Ireland. This development of a much better organised Catholic Church would obviously pose a threat to the recently dis-Established official church, the Church of Ireland. Hence, the stranglehold of the ‘English in Ireland’, the so-called Anglo-Irish Ascendancy, was now being seriously threatened.

        The female personification of Ireland as a maiden in distress is ironic, given that Ireland after the Act of Union with Britain had sometimes been referred to as the ‘Injured Lady’. What that meant was that the Anglo-Irish had felt seriously affronted by the Union of Scotland with England, leaving Ireland as the Ugly Sister thrown to the wolves (Hibernia was supposedly the younger sister of her older sister, Britannia, who got married off in Scotland).

        To me, the Punch cartoon shows the Irish as ungrateful and brutish. Not content with no longer having to pay tithes to the weakened Anglican church, and bolstered by a strengthened Catholic Church; not having been fended off by the Irish Land Bill with all its flaws (which the Bright clauses failed to address), and which supposedly was to have given them more security of tenure (but not really) on their land, the ungrateful beggars wanted to take the land as of right, perhaps by force!

        For the meaning of the symbolic device of The Tempest, with all its ghostly and mystical allusions, that is a whole other story. Prospero (England) was cast in the play as the initially virtuous hero who turned out to have a very dark side; Caliban was cast as an ill-mannered and unpredictable savage, but perhaps he was no worse than Prospero and just as entitled, if not more, to the island; and Caliban’s mother,Sycorax,never made an appearance but was always around as a wraith-like, other-worldly and malignant presence – perhaps a reference to primitive, animalistic and tribal forces within the Irish race (in the eyes of the English) that come from being Celtic.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 4, 2012 at 6:54 am

        For a near-contemporary account of the Land Bills, check out:

        The gist is that the Land Bill was to follow the model of the Uster Tenant-Rights scheme. On paper, the idea was sound: long-term tenants faced with eviction because they could not afford to pay racked (hiked) rents, and who had improved the leased property during their tenancy through their own efforts, would be able to go to arbitration to get up to three years’ worth of compensation.

        Fine enough in principle but few tenants faced with eviction went down that road. The arbitration panels were rigged in favour of landlords and tenants rarely got compensated. Over a three year post-Famine period, four times as many people emigrated as were evicted (2 million in total). Everyone could see the writing on the wall.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 4, 2012 at 6:56 am

        From Mary Cornell 2012/04/24

        I would like to comment on the sash and the presence of the word ultramontanism (infallibility of the papacy). Caliban, who is a reflection of the Irish as seen by the English, would , of course, be Roman Catholic, but the Irish are being represented as some kind of monster. We fear the monster, we fear the brutish and animalistic nature of the monster and we fear the irrationality of the monster. So is the cartoonist portraying that England and Gladstone fear the Catholic Church?

        I find it odd, then, that the extremely Protestant England should be represented by Prospero, who is associated with witchcraft and magic and all things supernatural, as a weapon to defeat the monster. Was it magic that would defeat the monster? The English do not seem to be too far removed from their fear of the dark as they would have thought they were.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 6, 2012 at 8:14 am

        The history of the term Ultramontanism is very interesting. The French have often been a law unto themselves, as Winnie would well know, being a student and expert on French culture. The term originated from the time the seat of the Catholic Church was in France, not Rome. Since then, the meaning of the term was turned on its head to mean the opposite, extreme conservatism, rather than the original independence of spirit that the term referred to at a time of non-Rome rule.

        Later on, the French pop up again when Napoleon saw himself as the successor to Charlemagne, the Holy Roman Emperor, and he was in a continuous battle with Popes Pius VI and VII. Quite apart from invading, occupying and taking over parts of Italy and the Papal States, Napoleon imprisoned both Popes and he refused to bury one for two months after he was dead! With Napoleon being Catholic, that gave a clear message to England and others that the secular power of the Pope was no longer something to be feared.

        As far as present-day Ireland is concerned, the Taoiseach Enda Kenny recently publicly rebuked the Catholic hierarchy and the Pope for their handling of the institutional sex abuse of children. In fact, he told the Italian Archbishop who was Papal Ambassador to pack up his bags and get out of his sight out of Dublin! He also indicated that he intended to strip away any last vestiges of influence the Church had upon government affairs. There has been no backlash to that from the electorate, in fact he has been widely applauded and it has increased his political stature.

    • winnie50

      May 5, 2012 at 10:54 pm

      Thanks to Don for taking the time and trouble to revamp the website. Don, I’ve read most of your book now, although I must say it’s been hit or miss for me because I have antediluvean software which prevents me from simply downloading the whole text. Somehow, accidentally, a link to the web version sometimes appears on my screen magically and I’m able to read several chapters–which is one reason I’ve been up till 4 in the morning.

      Anyway, I really liked the first chapter on emigration and the ones on convicts, especially on convict labor. And I thought the last chapter, by Laurie G. on sites of memory and the notion of Scottishness in light of postcolonial studies, was the perfect ending because it put Scottishness in a broader critical frame that extended beyond ethic and national matters.

      Also, I like Don’s idea of thinking about ancestors of Celts who live all over the world and can have or develop a new, imaginary relation to the Celts’ ethnic and national history, their struggles against British domination, their culture and language, and so on. This resonates with a lot of interesting work in cultural studies about more recently scattered peoples who reconnect in various ways with their “homeland,” eg the South Asian diaspora as shown in Mira Nair’s cool film Monsoon Wedding; in Shani Mootoo’s fabulous Indo-Trinidadian-Canadian novel Cereus Blooms at Night (1996), the reception of Bollywood here and there, etc.

      Here are some of my un-thought-out identifications with Irishness and its reincarnations in the US:

      the good: warm hospitality that came naturally to my mother; a sense of humor that led one of her coal-miner uncles, who was bald, to say “it’s a good thing the bloody cows don’t fly!”; the value placed on education (I hear Ireland has the best education system in the Western world); the fascination with other worlds intersecting with our own, and my delight at the thought of my great-grandfather and his brother being two of the Irish immigrants who peopled with forests of Pennsylvania with fairies; expressions like “old as Mother McCree,” which I’ve just realized I don’t hear anymore, but heard often in family conversations while growing up.

      the bad: a certain melancholy and fatalism; the smoldering resentment of close relatives and companions toward those who presume to achieve anything that distinguishes them from the group; oh, the drinking, and undoubtedly in the 19th c. taverns (usually run by Irishmen), the brawling; the malarkey, when it’s harmful; the sorry legacy of catholic guilt and the related tendency of families and individuals to keep guilty secrets for decades. I learned about my mother’s child, born out of wedlock in 1942, when both my parents had died and I was nearly 50. And I learned it from her son himself, Donald, who was raised by my aunt a mile away from my family in Silver Spring, Maryland. We grew up together! The poor guy learned the news only when our aunt unburdened her soul just before dying. Your basic skeleton in the closet.

      the ugly: skin that may or may not look fair but burns and freckles in youth and then later in life sprouts hundreds of liver patches, which, according to an American friend in Paris is called “the celtic curse,” whether by the French or by Americans I don’t know. Oh and ps, the Parigi people who founded the city of Paris were Celts. Who knew? This I learned from one of those tape recordings played on tourist boats on the river Seine, so I’m sure it’s true.

  39. Don MacFarlane

    May 4, 2012 at 6:32 am

    From Mary Cornell 2012/04/22

    Hi Don–
    Started wondering if satirical political cartoons should be considered for discussion in the Bookclub. I found an example of what seems to have been the prevailing English attitude toward the Irish.

    In ‘The Irish Frankenstein’, 1882, an awestruck Charles Parnell of the Irish Nationalist Party is crouching before his Creature which is depicted with the usual simian features of the Irishman in Punch cartoons. Fully armed, the Creature is powerful and ready for violence. Following the sudden and angry resignation of the Chief Secretary for Ireland, William Forster, Lord Frederick Cavendish had been appointed to the vacancy. However, on 6th May 1882, Cavendish and his Permanent Irish Under-Secretary, Mr Thomas Burke, were attacked by members of an Irish extremist group whilst walking in Phoenix Park, Dublin. They were slashed with long knives, and their throats were cut. Because of his support for the aims of the Irish Land Leaguers, Parnell was seen as largely responsible for the increasing violence of the Creature he had helped to create. From “Punch, or the London Charivari”, May 20, 1882.

    • Don MacFarlane

      May 4, 2012 at 6:34 am

      From Celticknot 2012/04/22

      Awesome quote!

      The clergy often did nothing and even delayed the issue of Human Rights being addressed in Ireland. When I asked Don if England ever apologized to the people in Scotland for their inhuman treatment he said no. When Scotland decided to move its people to understand what happened and move forward it was only a one sided discussion with England never making amends for what they did. Why does USA hold hands with Ireland but dances with the wolves in England? Why does the USA and the UN not make England address this issue?

      I like the idea of Mary’s to include the political cartoons and how they appeared in literature would also be a great point of discussion.

      • Don MacFarlane

        May 4, 2012 at 6:47 am

        From Celticknot 2012/04/22

        I think Americans like a good scandal like President Clinton and Monica Lewinsky. That made a lot of headlines and his indiscretions were printed in the newspapers and put on TV for all to see. However some people still liked President Clinton. Nothing like a woman scorned! Perhaps the passion for love and politics made them a better leader or maybe a more interesting one!

        I like the quote from Butt! Never heard that one! LOL! On another note: My momcollects political uniform buttons and other types. and especially American Civil War (Confederate). We looked up the 69th NY that Mitchel’s sons belonged to. When the 69th NY was asked by the establishment to parade in front of them they refused. My mother also has music from this time period of songs that were played by both sides. Thesongs from the 69th NY included Irish Volunteer and The Boys That Wore The Green. The CD is called Irish Volunteer by David Kincaid. The songs took place during the BattleOf Bull Run. I didn’t know if this music was of any interest, maybe it could go along with the political cartoons that Mary spoke about. I’ll check out the Dangers of Jacobism and Butt.

  40. Don MacFarlane

    May 4, 2012 at 6:20 am

    An improved photo gallery would be most welcome. At present, all that I have on site is the Geograph photo gallery Page which has photos of somewhat mediocre quality (including some of my own). Anyone who has photos to share should post a message to that effect and I will get back to them by email to get them transferred to the website.

    Perhaps Winnie could coordinate the Book Club as that would be bread-and-butter to her?

  41. celticknot226

    May 3, 2012 at 11:09 pm

    I was browsing the web and found this resource (You probably know about it!) but you can look up diaries, papers, periodicals etc. Ex I typed in land bills and there were a dozen entries. The website: IED Irish Emigration Database. DIPPAM is an online virtual free archive. Documents are related to Ireland and migration in 18-20th centuries.

  42. Don MacFarlane

    May 3, 2012 at 8:20 pm

    Submitted on 2012/04/22 at 7:33 pm

    Started wondering if satirical political cartoons should be considered for discussion in the Bookclub. I found an example of what seems to have been the prevailing English attitude toward the Irish.

    In ‘The Irish Frankenstein’, 1882, an awestruck Charles Parnell of the Irish Nationalist Party is crouching before his Creature which is depicted with the usual simian features of the Irishman in Punch cartoons. Fully armed, the Creature is powerful and ready for violence. Following the sudden and angry resignation of the Chief Secretary for Ireland, William Forster, Lord Frederick Cavendish had been
    appointed to the vacancy. However, on 6th May 1882, Cavendish and his Permanent Irish Under-Secretary, Mr Thomas Burke, were attacked by members of an Irish extremist group whilst walking in Phoenix Park, Dublin. They were slashed with long knives, and their throats were cut. Because of his support for the aims of the Irish Land Leaguers, Parnell was seen as largely responsible for the increasing violence of the Creature he had helped to create. From “Punch, or the London Charivari”.


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