Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Celtic Corner - March 2013


 March is for the Irish and we should think about all the contributions that the Celtic people have made to world culture throughout history. For such a small island, Ireland has made an enormously large contribution to the world of literature, art and music, in both the Irish and English language.

Ireland has produced many poets & authors. James Joyce is one of the Twentieth Century’s greatest authors producing the novels Ulysses, and Finnegan’s Wake. Oscar Wilde wrote the famous Portrait of Dorian Grey, while Poets William Butler Yeats and Samuel Beckett are influential to this day. Eighteenth Century fiction work derived by Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver Travels and Oliver Goldsmith’s The Vicar of Wakefield were known world wide. Irish writers have been awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature numerous times. Irish Literature can be traced back to the 5th Century.

Irish Theatre began in the 1600 but became of age with emergence of George Bernard Shaw, Oscar Wilde and the establishment in Dublin in 1899 of the Irish Literary Theater later to become the famous Abbey Theater, performing plays by W.B. Yeats, Lady Gregory, John Millington Synge and Sean O’Casey. In the Twentieth Century, Samuel Beckett, Brendan Behan, Brian Friel, Frank McGuiness and many more came into prominence.

Irish dance dates back to the Twelfth Century. The Irish Reels, Jigs and Hornpipes noted to be danced in Galway in the 16th Century with different styles all across the country. All of this brought Michael Flatly & Jean Butler into international acclaim. Riverdance and Lord of the Dance had world wide success.

When we talk about Irish in Music, we cannot forget George M. Cohen, Bing Crosby, Dennis Day, Carmel Quinn and Rosemary Clooney. There are so many, that I cannot begin to write them all down.

In Literature, Eugene O’Neill, F.Scott Fitzgerald, William Kennedy, Frank McCourt, Tom Clancy and so many more.

In the Media, there are Ed Sullivan, Phil Donahue, Chris Matthews, Bill O’Reilly just to name a very few.

And of course I have to include one of my favorites, Paul McCartney. Paul was with his new Band Wings when he released ”Give Ireland Back to The Irish”. The song was written in response to Bloody Sunday in Northern Ireland on Jan 30, 1972. Paul was told not to release it, that it would be banned and not good for his image. Paul felt so strongly about what had happened that he forced its release. The song which was banned from the United Kingdom, The BBC, Radio Luxembourg and Independent Television Authority, still made it to the public. It was #1 in the Republic of Ireland. Also, one of the band members was badly beaten by a group of Protestants in Belfast. Paul McCartney who was born in Liverpool, England was one Hell of an Irishman.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Lá Fhéile Pádraig Sona Duit
La ale-lah paw-rig son-ah ditch

Correspondence Secretary & Irish Man of the Year 2013
-- Frank Darcy