small town ireland and conformity

Discussion in 'Letting Off Steam' started by joe sod, Jul 21, 2018.

  1. joe sod

    joe sod Frequent Poster

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    This is actually a fairly old theme and was much more explored in past times by the likes of Patrick Kavanagh and others. Strangely there is very little discussion of it today even though the phenomenon is as strong as ever. You live in a small town and there are all these social pressures to conform, you must feign interest in the gaa, you must not stand out too much or wear too fancy cloths, you must not talk about stuff thats too intellectual and local issues and gossip trump everything else.
    Of course thats also the charm of rural ireland and why tourists love to visit the irish pub but at the back of all this charm i think there is the heavy hand of conformity which is still as strong as ever. Its not the conformity of the past, and the church is not responsible now. I think pat shortt captured the ugliness of it well in the film "garage". Even the "village idiot" is not allowed to get notions above his station. This film was in a relatively modern setting , a rural setting in the mid 2000s.
     
  2. RETIRED2017

    RETIRED2017 Frequent Poster

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    Last edited: Jul 21, 2018
    I suspect it is not confined to rural Ireland You will see glimpics of it on various topics on this site lots of it over the last few days in fact,
    It is bubbiling beneath the surface you will see it being brought to the surface if you watch out for it,
    I suspect you would find yourself banned on lots of forums if you pointed it out ,
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2018
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  3. cremeegg

    cremeegg Frequent Poster

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    Nonsense.

    There will always be people, from your mother to the village gossip, who want you to live your life on their terms.

    It is entirely your choice; to accept their dictates, or to live your own life.

    In the past they could perhaps deny you job opportunities or lock you up in a mother and baby home. Today by comparison they have no real power. Though your mother can always withhold her approval, I suppose.

    Wether the price you pay is loss of a career or just a sniff from a busybody, the choice to live your own life is yours. If you are not willing to pay the price you deserve what you get.

    Usually if you ignore them, they will come around to accepting you on your terms in the end, and if not you are still better off to do your own thing.
     
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  4. joe sod

    joe sod Frequent Poster

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    Its not nonsense , you have not got what i was talking about. Im merely pointing it out and seeing what others think. Im not really talking personally and im not looking for personal advice . Sometimes people become dismissive of these topics yet they are the source of some of irelands best literature from patrick kavanagh to john b keane. Im merely drawing attention to it in the modern irish context , yet it is not a topic that is really explored nowadays. There are no modern patrick kavanaghs delving into it nowadays.
     
  5. Leper

    Leper Frequent Poster

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    When I retired earlier this year an investment was pointed out to me i.e. rent out our house where we now live, buy a house in small-town-Ireland (where I am from) and live happily ever after. I left the town nearly 50 years ago and thought (i) I couldn't inflict the town on my nearest-and-dearest (ii) My grown up kids would disown me (iii) I wasn't going to renew acquaintances with whom I went to school.

    But, as this form is titled Askaboutmoney, there would be a good income from my current home if I rented it out as against buying a house for an unbelieveable low price. The new adventure in small-town-Ireland was never going to be a runner. But, wait a minute, what if I rented out our main house and live in small-town-Ireland for say six months?

    Mrs Lep would have a heart attack. I'll leave well enough alone . . . for now.
     
  6. RETIRED2017

    RETIRED2017 Frequent Poster

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    Last edited: Jul 22, 2018
    Looks like you never left the small town or the big town is like the small town so six months in both looks just about right for Lep the only thing if he/she gets a heart attack better have it in the one nearest to a good Hospital, :D
    If you did move ? (i) (ii) (iii) you will be moving away from stale small town Ireland to a place that has moved on in time,
    If you ever get to live there I am sure you well be wondering where small town Ireland now live you will get your a answer in (i) (ii) (iii) or on a forum' like this, :D
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2018
  7. Leo

    Leo Moderator

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    Care to give us some examples or you just throwing around baseless accusations?

    There are plenty of examples that make it clear no one is ever banned for having a different point of view.
     
  8. Leo

    Leo Moderator

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    It's not just an Irish thing, it's human nature and happens in communities all over the world, the only remotely Irish element is the GAA talk. Conformity has been well tested, observed, and documented for decades, it's pervasive in society as a whole, but in smaller communities there are fewer groupings, so people who don't conform with the dominant social grouping don't have an alternative peer group to align with and so tend to feel ostracised. There are plenty of people who feel similarly ostracised in towns and cities too, so it's not just a rural phenomenon.

    It's such an innate behaviour that children as young as 2 display these traits when meeting groups of peers.
     
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  9. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    If you do this then please also do a blog. I'd love to read it. :D
     
  10. Leper

    Leper Frequent Poster

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    Hi Purple, Due to my inherited shyness I'd be afraid to do a blog on anything. But, if I did do a blog, then A Year in Provence would be minor to it.
    Regards
    Lep
     
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  11. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    Yes, I do admire how you overcome your inherent shyness when posting here. One of many things I admire about you!