When the playright John Millington Synge visited the island of Inis Meáin his first impression was far from flattering. He described the island which forms one of the three Aran Islands as a “place was hardly fit for habitation” and in a reference to the barren landscape he said “there was no green to be seen”. In spite of this Synge would spend weeks there learning Irish while also cataloguing islanders lives’ in what became a famous book “Connemara and the Aran Islands”. This island life mesmerised Synge in its simpicity and uniqueness. Even in 1898 life on Inis Meáin harked back to a past that had disappeared elsewhere. Remarkably forty years later when my grandfather Eamonn Mac Coisdealbha visited Inis Meáin to practice his Irish he found life there very much the same. He documented Island life through a series of photographs taken in August 1942, recording a society that would vanish in the course of the 20th century.
Archive for the ‘Aran Islands’ Category
Whats comin next?
I am currently working on an article about Irish Involvement in the Boer War (1899-1902) and episode 9 of the podcast which will focus on the battle of Clontarf (1014).
My current longterm project at the moment is an audiobook about the Black Death in Ireland focusing on the lives of 5 people from the time.
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Who’s Fin?Fin, for his sins, completed a degree in Greek and Roman Civilisation and Archaeology. After this he took a Masters in Archaeology. Miraculously he still likes history and archaeology, despite the best intentions of the education system. He spent a few years being used by shady developers in what is often called the 'archaeology industry' in Ireland. Now, not surprisingly given his qualifications he is among the 500,000 unemployed in Ireland. He recently was disappointed when the Irish government decided against hiring him as a adviser on the fall of the Roman republic but this music http://www.myspace.com/racketsquad cheers him up no end......
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