Cultural Issues In Ireland

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For generations Ireland has been more widely known for its Emigration rather than Immigration. This emigration was the result of lack of employment prevailing in the Country at the time. Mainly from rural areas, where due to the absence of a social welfare "safety net", it wasn't a matter of choice. Families couldn't afford to feed and clothe all their members. So it was normal for the eldest son to remain, while the others Emigrated. Unfortunately this trend has materialised once again since the financial crash of 2008. This coincides with the end of the "Celtic Tiger" era, a phrase first coined by Kevin Gardiner in 1994 in compiling a Morgan Stanley report. (Reinventing Ireland: Culture, Society and the Global Economy) (2002)
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The first, and probably the most important factor is which Countries does these immigrants originate? For example if these cultural differences consist of race, colour, religion, gender equality, education etc, those who come from a "westernised" society will more easily integrate into our culture than those from a more marginalised society such as Africa, India, the middle and far east, Asia etc.
Main cultural difficulties:
1. Language: English is the language most widespread in Ireland, even though Irish is spoken throughout the country, Therefore any non English speaking immigrants will be at a disadvantage.
2. Education: If the challenges of language is a problem than integrating into our education system will be much more difficult. Different countries teach different subjects, some come from countries where education isn't compulsory, some with no education at all, and some come from countries where education is a privilege only for the wealthy. But generally Ireland's standard of education is
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But to leave behind friends and family, ones whole life, for long periods of time, or in some cases forever could be described as traumatic. To say goodbye to all those memories, accumulated throughout ones entire lives, is a very courageous step. It's not an easy decision.
At the beginning of this essay I described how many Irish had to Emigrate. Due to their lack of education and language skills their choice was limited to English speaking Countries. They emigrated mostly to the UK and the US.
Our new Immigrants faced even greater barriers. Very few spoke English. It was more like emigrating to another planet than another Country. But due to their determination they learned to speak English, many self taught. Though many returned to their native Country after the economic collapse, those who have remained have built up their own identities and communities, and have enriched the multicultural society we live in and enjoy today.

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