The dramatic modernisation that An Cheathrú Rua (Carraroe) in the Conamara Gaeltacht1 has experienced from the mid-twentieth century onwards, has brought about a state of technologically-induced social isolation2 amongst the local population. This feeling of social isolation is mirrored by the loudness of Conamara Country and Western (CC&W) performances, which inhibit verbal communication and therefore community bonding. In the past in Carraroe, the performance of sean-nós3 and Irish traditional music was a fully participatory, and a highly intimate event. As such, it helped to reinforce the community bonds essential for sustaining the area’s economy which, up until the early 1960s, was a co-operative labour system. The introduction of industry to Carraroe brought an end to this system, and, by extension, sean-nós lost its function in the community. To compound matters, due to the influence of Romantic nationalism, sean-nós is widely seen as an index of an idealised primitive Gaeltacht, which bears little resemblance to contemporary Gaeltacht life. CC&W music sung in Irish/Gaelic4 has become the dominant music genre of the area, partly because the cosmopolitan nature of CC&W subverts the primitive image of the Gaeltacht fostered by Romantic revivalists. Since Carraroe is one of Conamara’s major socialising hubs, it is, in my opinion, a synecdoche for the Conamara Gaeltacht.
|Title of host publication||Ón gCos go Cluas|
|Subtitle of host publication||From Dancing to Listening|
|Editors||Liz Doherty, Fintan Vallely|
|Publisher||Aberdeen University Press|
|Number of pages||10|
|Publication status||Published - 2019|
|Event||North Atlantic Fiddle Convention Conference - Northern Ireland, Derry/Londonderry, United Kingdom|
Duration: 27 Jun 2012 → 1 Jul 2012
|Name||Fiddle and Dance Studies from around the North Atlantic 5|
|Conference||North Atlantic Fiddle Convention Conference|
|Period||27/06/12 → 1/07/12|
Costello , É. (2019). Participatory music in the Irish Gaeltacht. In L. Doherty, & F. Vallely (Eds.), Ón gCos go Cluas: From Dancing to Listening (pp. 38-47). (Fiddle and Dance Studies from around the North Atlantic 5). Aberdeen University Press.