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Léachtaí Cholm Cille XLI

Clíona Ní Ríordáin
p. 190-192
Référence(s) :

Tadhg Ó Dushlaine, Caitríona Ní Chleiricin (eag.), Léachtaí Cholm Cille XLI : Filí INNTI go hiontach, Maigh Nuad, An Sagart, 2011, ISBN 1-903896-65-7, 12 €.

Texte intégral

1This collection of essays is the fruit of the 2010 Léachtaí Cholm Cille Symposium. The Symposium has been in existence since 1970 and, as Tadhg Ó Dúsh­láine points out in his editorial, the year corresponds to the publication of the first edition of the review INNTI.

2The broadsheet, launched in Cork’s Country Club, sent a frisson through the world of Irish language publishing and literature, and many of those present at the launch of the first edition vividly remember the event as the moment when Irish language poetry was revitalised and liberated into the streets. More than a thousand people attended the party to celebrate the publication of the second number a year later, in 1971.

3Theo Dorgan’s article, linking Bob Dylan and the New Gaeltacht, bears witness to the tangible excitement felt by the schoolboys in the North Monastery School in Cork, Dorgan amongst them, when Michael Davitt and Paddy Brennan erupted into the classroom selling copies of the broadsheet. Both the paper and the vendors seemed to come straight from Berkeley, offering the counter culture of the sixties in Irish. The poets, as he puts it, had one foot in California and the other on the sand of Dún Chaoin. Dorgan makes the connection between Davitt and Bob Dylan. Davitt himself also acknowledged the influence of the Beat poets. The importance of the movement for Dorgan is summed up when he says INNTI meant that the Irish language was transformed for him: no longer a school subject, it became a means of expression, a language owned by the people and not by the Brothers or the authorities, a language in which the poetry of the everyday could be written. Interestingly, he also makes the point that for him the language in which the poetry is written is unimportant; he sees it as part of a whole, a lyrical movement that flourished in Ireland in the following years, where Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill was as great a heroine for the English language poet Paula Meehan as she was for Mary O’Malley, who moves between both languages.

4The essays that follow Dorgan’s stirring témoignage analyse different aspects of the poetry associated with the movement. Pádraigín Riggs examines the work of Liam Ó Muirthile, looking at the various languages of the poet. She stresses the connection Ó Muirthile had to the French language, discussing in detail the various translations Ó Muirthile undertook of poets as varied as Jacques Prévert, François Villon or Guillaume Apollinaire. For Riggs, Ó Muirthile excels in his use of language, or languages; she traces the origins of rare terms and identifies the deep connection with the Gaeltacht felt in poetry and use of language of this city boy.

5Ownership and use of the Irish language, “an teanga seo leath-liom” (this language half mine), were an issue for one of the tutelary figures of these poets, Seán Ó Ríordáin. He himself was targeted for the quality of his not quite Gaeltacht Irish on the publication of his first collection. His reaction to the poets and his influence on them is explored in an essay by Róisín Ní Ghairbhí, and also in that by Tadhg Ó Dúshláine himself. Ó Dúshláine stresses the Cork identity of the early issues (the first three numbers were published in Cork). His discussion, of these poets as a school, is illuminated by TS Eliot’s thinking on the idea of young writers with certain affinities. Elsewhere, Caitríona Ní Chléiricín and Caoimhín Mac Giolla Léith examine other poets associated with the journal, such as Louis de Paor and Gabriel Rosenstock, while Pádraig de Paor examines the more recent work of Derry O’Sullivan.

6This issue of Léachtaí Cholm Chille makes a significant contribution to the understanding of the INNTI generation of poets and it should make an invaluable addition to all research libraries.

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Référence papier

Clíona Ní Ríordáin, « Léachtaí Cholm Cille XLI », Études irlandaises, 37-1 | 2012, 190-192.

Référence électronique

Clíona Ní Ríordáin, « Léachtaí Cholm Cille XLI », Études irlandaises [En ligne], 37-1 | 2012, mis en ligne le 30 juin 2012, consulté le 21 janvier 2018. URL :

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Clíona Ní Ríordáin

Université Sorbonne Nouvelle – Paris 3

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