Irish language activist explores hidden Ulster Scots culture
18th January 2010
An unusual and controversial perspective on the Ulster Scots language and culture is explored in a one hour documentary film, directed by an Irish language activist.
Deaglán Ó Mocháin’s film, The Hamely Tongue – Cultúr Ceilte (Hidden Culture) on Irish language station, TG4, on Wednesday 20th January at 9.30pm, argues for a more nuanced perspective on Ulster Scots than the normal broad swipes at the language that prevail in the Irish media or on web forums.
When the term ‘Ulster Scots’ is mentioned the default position is often humour – that this is a Ballymena accent, ‘Oor Willie’ or a series of made up words; or anger – that this is a pretence, a vehicle to counter Irish, a financial scam, the language of the DUP.
Ó Mocháin’s film argues for a more nuanced perspective on Ulster Scots by excavating an exciting and radical history – the history of 1798 in the north, and the flowering of intellectual development associated with the enlightenment and the French and American revolutions.
At the core of this film is respect for the choices that people make in terms of their identity, an issue that is at the heart of modern day Irish language activism.
The Hamely Tongue - Cultúr Ceilte is an independently produced film by Soilsiú Films for broadcast on TG4, and made with the support of The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (Sound & Vision), Foras na Gaeilge and The Ulster-Scots Agency.
The Hamely Tongue – Cultúr Ceilte (Hidden Culture) on TG4 on Wednesday 20th January at 9.30pm.
For further information, interviews with the director, screening copies, and still photos, please contact Soilsiú Films on firstname.lastname@example.org, or by telephoning +353 74 9180730
Text supplied by Deaglán Ó Mocháin.