In the lecture given by one of our tour guides, we learned quite a lot about how Ireland is portrayed through advertisement, entertainment, and sports, as well as how this influences Irish identity and vice versa.
One of the more important points that we learned at the beginning of the lecture was this idea that being Irish ultimately comes down to distancing oneself from any kind of modernization in order to preserve that sanctity of one’s past, culture, morals, and traditions. This nature is essentially underlined by the more well-known aspects of Irish society that most of us are familiar with. In particular, the countryside and its serenity, the richness of food and alcoholic beverages, the closeness of different communities across the island, the Gaellic games and its long-celebrated legacy, which is demonstrated culturally by the sports’ lack of monetization towards the athletes who participate in the sport.
As far as advertisement, there are different ways that it portrays various parts of Irish society, whether it be everyday necessities, food and liquor, or sports. Sometimes these advertisements may give out a false impression upon people who do not know much about what Irish culture really stands for, but the major departure in all this is the idea that idea that Ireland is this country that seems to have closed itself off (to some extent, not completely) to the rest of the world, as far as modernization is concerned, thus making us question what it really means to identify as Irish.