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Should Irish Americans still identify as Irish?

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Should Irish Americans still identify as Irish?

The Irish diaspora is one of the longest standing in history, with generations of Irish-born people settling outside of their homeland since before the Great Famine. As a result, there are far more people who identify as being ‘Irish-American’ than those living in Ireland itself. This begs the question – why are American-born descendants of Diaspora Irish so tenacious about identifying with their homeland, even when their connections are generations distant?

Kerry Keys, a fourth-generation Irish American living in New York is one such example. According to Keys, “Irish culture is important to my family so it’s important to me.” Keys is not the only one whose family helped shape her Irish American identity – many are proud of their cultural heritage and pass down stories, traditions and values from one generation to the next.

Such practices help to keep the memory of Ireland alive for those living outside its borders – as do organisations like The Irish Diaspora Network, which unites Irish people all over the world. The Irish Diaspora Network serves to foster connections between the diaspora and the homeland by organising events and activities that help keep alive a strong sense of national pride amongst its members.

Irish culture also plays an important role in helping new generations retain a connection with their ancestry, with Irish music and dance being popular in many countries. What’s more, many American-born descendants enjoy celebrating St. Patrick’s Day each year as a way to commemorate their cultural heritage.

Ultimately, the rich culture of Ireland is what binds people from all over the world together with their shared past and ancestry. Despite being multiple generations removed from Ireland, many Irish Americans remain tenacious in their cultural identification and proud of the heritage that has been passed down to them. The desire to maintain a connection with their homeland is what drives American-born descendants of Diaspora Irish to celebrate their culture and hold onto the cherished traditions of their ancestors.

 Through activities such as music, dance and celebration, the Irish diaspora continues to keep the spirit of Ireland alive in countries around the globe.  This is a testament to both their resilience and dedication to their heritage.

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What do the Irish think about Irish Americans claiming to be Irish

Should Irish Americans still identify as Irish?

Mixed Reaction: What the Irish Think About Irish Americans Claiming to be Irish

The relationship between Ireland and its descendants in America has been a complex one for centuries. On the one hand, many Irish Americans take immense pride in their heritage, claiming to be “as Irish as Guinness” or “more Irish than potatoes.” On the other hand, many Irish nationals view these proclamations with a mixture of bemusement and eye rolling.

The view that people in Ireland have toward their American counterparts is not uniform across the nation. Some embrace the self-proclaimed “ultra-Irishness” of those abroad, sometimes inviting them over to enjoy the country’s culture and customs. Others, particularly those who have not had the opportunity to travel abroad and explore their heritage, view those claiming Irish identity with suspicion. Is this person truly a part of their culture or are they simply exploiting it for their own ends?

The issue is further complicated by cultural appropriation, with some Irish Americans embracing aspects of their heritage that have been taken out of context or commercialized for the benefit of others. This often results in a feeling of resentment within Ireland, as well as confusion about why American descendants are so eager to embrace certain parts of their identity while rejecting others.

Ultimately, the relationship between those abroad and the people of Ireland is a complex one, with many feeling both admiration and distrust for their American counterparts. Whether or not Irish Americans will be accepted as “truly” Irish may depend on how they embrace their heritage: by understanding its nuances, respecting its culture, and learning from those who are already a part of it..

The topic is a complex and emotional one and has been discussed and argued about in online forums such as the Love Ireland Group many times. Discussions are not always cordial as emotions sometimes run high on this topic and it is sure to be a continuing topic over a pint of Guinness.

Why You Need The Ultimate Ireland Travel Guide (it’s Free)

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The Ultimate Ireland Travel Guide

Why You Need The Ultimate Ireland Travel Guide (it’s Free)

Are you planning a trip to Ireland? If so, then the Ultimate Ireland Travel Guide is an essential resource. From money and travel documents to facts about Ireland and Irish customs, this guide will give you all the information you need for your trip.

What is Saint Patrick’s day?

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What is Saint Patrick's day?

What is Saint Patrick’s day?

Feast day of Saint Patrick also popularly known as Saint Patrick’s day is held on 17 March every year to commemorate the death date of Saint Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland.

Ready for that trip to Ireland? Start planning here!


Last updated May 29, 2023


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