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Tag Archives: Irish Language Officer

‘There’s healing in the language,’ says Clare’s Irish Language Officer

“WHEN it comes to learning Irish, everyone has a story,” according Michael McCaughan, Clare County Council’s first Irish Language Officer in six years. “It might be a generational thing, but people very often have baggage that needs to be unpacked. There are bad experiences someone might need to move beyond, not to mention the fact that after spending 14 years learning it in a classroom, we can hardly order a cup of coffee through Irish.” As someone who is not a native speaker himself, Michael is uniquely positioned to understand the hurdles many face when it comes to using more Gaeilge, as well as the multitude of ways that people can enjoy and appreciate the language. His own story of “coming home” to Irish and choosing to live his life through that medium is likely to inspire many. Michael left school with a fluency in French and Spanish, before “a kind of mixture of punk rock and a sense of …

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