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"Talkin' Different"

Linguistic Diversity and the Irish Traveller Minority

Author(s): Joan O'Sullivan

Book Description

The Irish Travellers are one of Ireland's oldest minorities, a minority who have frequently lived on the margins of the "majority" or settled community. This volume explores linguistic change amongst this cultural group with a particular focus on the influence of the educational system. This book analyses whether increased attendance by young Traveller women in secondary education is influencing long-term change in linguistic usage and speech patterns. The tendency for convergence/non-convergence to the settled community's speech patterns is analysed as is the question of whether such speech variations are a strategy for "survival" in the school environment. This study is based on an analysis of both naturally-occurring conversation and speech as explored within an informal interview setting.


ISBN-13: 978-1-8471-8520-4
ISBN-10: 1-84718-520-7
Date of Publication: 01/04/2008
Pages / Size: 240 / A5
Price: £39.99


Joan O’Sullivan works as an English Language teacher at the University of Limerick Language Centre, Ireland and also in the Department of Languages and Cultural Studies at the University of Limerick.

Aidan O'Sullivan is an Irish artist living and working in Limerick, Ireland. He studied painting in Limerick School of Art and Design. He has exhibited nationally and has received various awards for his work including the Lewis Crosby Award for Painting 2005 and the Bank of Ireland Purchase Award 2006. His work may be viewed at

Dr. Mícheál Ó hAodha lectures part-time in the Department of History at the University of Limerick, Ireland on a number of History, Politics and Social Studies (HPSS) courses relating to the history of Irish Migration. He has published widely on the history and literature of migrant and minority groups. His publications include: Irish Travellers: Representations and Realities; Dublin: Liffey Press (2006) and On the Margins of Memory: Recovering the Migrant Voice; UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing (2007).