Actress Saoirse Ronan

I fail to understand the furore on social media this side of the Irish Sea because the London Film Critics Circle made reference to Irish actress Saoirse Ronan being shortlisted for the “Young British Performer of the Year”. It is not just the British that display a blurred sense of identity when dealing with Irish issues; we have mastered that trait ourselves.

The British sporting and entertainment industries routinely categorise Irish successes as British achievements and act accordingly by awarding titles of nobility to leading Irish notables as if they were British subjects.

Historically, one of the options open to a major power wishing to absorb or annex a smaller country over a prolonged period of time would have been to integrate gradually the elite and notables of the smaller country into the social and political establishment of the major imperial power.

Sooner, rather than later, society in the Irish State must make fundamental decisions regarding its political identity, ethos and future policy directions. Will we continue along the path of nation-building, slowly trying to assert a distinct postcolonial Irish identity in alliance with the nations of Europe, or do we now instead see ourselves as part of the “Anglosphere”, realigning ourselves ever more closely towards Great Britain?

This is a serious question, and it is being posed because recent Government actions and trends suggest that the State is involved in a significant shift away from the type of political identity that has been projected since the establishment of the Republic of Ireland in 1949

Tom Cooper,
Dublin 6W.


British honours and Irish citizens (Irish Times letters page)

Related: And the best British actor is . . . Saoirse Ronan? Really? (Donald Clarke, Irish Times)

Leah Farrell/RollingNews

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79 thoughts on “Saoirsely?

    1. Randy Ewing

      Is it ?

      Saoirse was born in the states, when she travels on her US passport what awards does she go for ?

      1. Spaghetti Hoop

        Her nationality is Irish; she has dual citizenship of Ireland and USA.

        She also likes peacock prints it seems.

          1. Spaghetti Hoop

            No, it’s quite a complicated-looking dress.

            (I think your beef is with diddy there, oilman.)

          2. meadowlark

            Yeah it’s complex all right. She’s the only person in Ireland who holds dual citizenship.

            Also is Rory McIlroy Irish or Northern Irish, while we’re discussing complexities such as these.

      2. Anomanomanom

        And she’s 100% irish. As an actress she would be an idiot not to use an American passport if she can while travelling in America. It does not make her less irish.

  1. Anomanomanom

    Well its really simple. We’re irish NOT British. We may be Europeans but we or nationality is European. If the choice was Europe(as a state) or aligning with Britain, then it’s Britain all the way. But don’t won’t happen……. Well no time soon.

      1. DubLoony

        Nope, we are part of the UK & Ireland. British isles are defunct. Besides, not all of this island is British.

        1. Randy Ewing

          Don’t be confusing political borders with geography.

          The British Isles are a group of islands off the north-western coast of continental Europe that consist of the islands of Great Britain, Ireland and over six thousand smaller isles.

          Two sovereign states are located on the islands: Ireland (a republic which covers roughly five-sixths of the island with the same name) and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (which includes the countries of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland).

          The British Isles also include three dependencies of the British Crown: the Isle of Man and, by tradition, the Bailiwick of Jersey and the Bailiwick of Guernsey in the Channel Islands, although the latter are not physically a part of the archipelago.

          1. ReproBertie

            If you read a little further down wikipedia you’d have found: “The term British Isles is controversial in Ireland,where there are objections to its usage due to the association of the word British with Ireland. The Government of Ireland does not recognise or use the term and its embassy in London discourages its use. As a result, Britain and Ireland is used as an alternative description”

          2. Spaghetti Hoop

            The term is defunct, as DubLooney says. This happens a lot with the earth’s geography and names.

          3. delacaravanio

            The British Isles is obsolete. It became so when Ireland became a republic, as a consequence of which the UK parliament passed the Ireland Act 1949. This removed Britain’s territorial claim over the Republic of Ireland at which point Irish people from (what was prior to then known as Southern Ireland) ceased to be British Subjects. The term British Isles became defunct from that time on.

            No one with a modicum of sense would refer to India, Pakistan and Bangladesh as British India, ditto the Belgian Congo (Democratic Republic of the Congo) or New Holland (Australia). Similarly one could not speak of holidays in the Gaul or visiting East Prussia. All were political, and remain geographical names, but time moves on.

          4. FortyCoats

            Even the egg-chasers have copped-on to the – ahem – acquisitive use of “British”: hence British and Irish Lions.

        1. Dav

          I’m irish and a slave to the german bondholders that the traitors in government have handed over our sovereignty to.

          1. ReproBertie

            That’s more than a little revisionist. FF were the ones that handed the keys over to the troika.

            Slavery ain’t what it used to be if they’re allowing you spend your day here.

          2. Neilo

            Some internal folk devils to conjure as well: Ireland Inc spent like a drunken sailor in a Shanghai knocking shop. No wonder we ran short of money and couldn’t borrow at any kind of reasonable rates.

  2. Spaghetti Hoop

    From what I’ve observed, this is down to ignorance rather than a devious intent to assimilate.

    1. meadowlark

      I believe now would be the time to make that joke about Andy Murray and Mo Farrah (hope I have that right) only being British when they win.

  3. Clampers Outside!

    “Will we continue along the path of nation-building, slowly trying to assert a distinct postcolonial Irish identity in alliance with the nations of Europe”
    Answer: Done already.

    “or do we now instead see ourselves as part of the “Anglosphere”, realigning ourselves ever more closely towards Great Britain?”
    Answer: Who is doing that in all fairness…. is it the British awards and media the ‘Anglosphere’ you speak of, when they call someone Irish ‘British’. It’s annoying, a bit, but what of it. Is it a ‘culture’ thing you have issue with or political…. what is this ‘Anglosphere’? It’s too vague and meaningless to debate. It’s total bullcrappola! Is it the multi-culturalism this guy is afraid of, is it propecting Peig and the Irish language… what the fupp us ‘Anglosphere’……..?

    “a significant shift away from the type of political identity that has been projected since the establishment of the Republic of Ireland in 1949.”
    That’s a DAMN GOOD THING to move away from the simple left right mickey mouse conservative politics of the establishment of the Republic. It’s about time we shook all that crappolla off, and tried something new for all the people and not just the few… which is what that path has lead us to and will continue to do. I’ll say it again… That’s a DAMN GOOD THING to move away from!

        1. cluster

          Technically its not true.

          Britain and the UK are not synonyms, however much it suited both British & Irish nationalists at the turn of the 20th Century.

    1. Neilo

      Not all, only the party president’s brother along with the volunteers who gave ‘special hugs’. Barely counts, really.

  4. ahyeah

    Once in San Diego, I inadvertently and shamefully offended some locals by simultaneously vomiting and urinating on what I thought was a vacant bench. At a certain point, one of them exclaimed, “Get the fupp out of here, you English cnut”. Given the circumstances, I allowed the error to go unchallenged. Perhaps Saoirse Ronan is of a similar mindset…have you seen the film?

  5. Mé Féin

    A Dec. 15 Tweet on the London Critics page sez: Note that our local categories have been renamed this year as British/Irish, celebrating the film industry that spans Ireland and the UK.

      1. Neilo

        Of course it does – heaven forfend, property prices might be adversely affected! My hometown has a series of random characters and numbers in lieu of a rational Royal Mail type code.

        1. cluster

          The Royal Mail postcode is not very rational.

          The shame is that we have adopted a similar system instead of a more intelligent version.

  6. nellyb

    “The FIA’s International Sporting Regulations state that drivers competing in FIA World Championships shall compete under the nationality of their passport, rather than that of the National Sporting Authority that issued their racing licence, as is the case in other racing series.[100]

    This situation created some confusion as to Irvine’s nationality when he appeared at podium ceremonies in the Formula One World Championship. At his third podium, a second place for Ferrari at the 1997 Argentine Grand Prix, an Irish Tricolour was mistakenly flown by the race organisers.[101]

    This led to his family receiving threatening phone calls. Irvine then requested that at subsequent races, a politically neutral shamrock flag be flown, and the non-sectarian Londonderry Air be played to mark a victory.[99] An FIA spokesman said:

    “As far as we understand, Irvine has a British passport so the Union Jack should be raised. … I understand he has a special flag, but our regulations do not allow this”

    1. Clampers Outside!

      Yeah but, he was born in Newtownards, NI, United Kingdom. Different thing to Saoirse as she’s born south of the border.

      That said, didn’t know about his particular flag issue.

      1. nellyb

        Sorry, it was more about anglo-irish sphere bs and people claiming to be Irish without any intent of formalizing it. And british “reciprocating” by claiming irish citizens as british.

        If Saoirse doesn’t hold british passport – then she should have politely returned the award for one of two reasons: 1) award issued to the wrong person 2) worthlessness of award issued by ignorant people.

        But if she does have a british passport – then she’s as British as anyone else with that citizenship.

    1. Bingo

      Usually, people that have this gripe are insecure with their own place in Irish society.
      “Why aren’t others thinking the same way I do?”
      I might be wrong about this….

  7. 15 cents

    very easy to see which path ol’ Tom himself would like us to take. Even though those two paths are not two present options, because Ireland (Republic) is not .. not .. a part of Britain. As much as Tom yearns for those days to return, probably standing down at dollymount strand daily, gazing over the sea, salivating like a prostitute awaiting sailors on shore leave at the prospect of the British returning to rule. Well pull up your pants, Tom. You wont be getting any royal penis any time soon, because unfortunately for you, Ireland is a Republic.

  8. Micko

    It’s simple…when we do well we are British e.g. “Saoirse Ronan shortlisted for Young British Performer of the Year”.

    When we do not do so well, we are Irish, as in “Brawling Irish fans force jet to return to JFK”. Or “Irish tourist fights off Turkish shopkeepers in street brawl”.

    That’s the “fighting Irish” for you….

  9. Peter Dempsey

    If you get worked up that the Brits claiming Irish celebrities then do something positive – join a splinter republican group and plant bombs.

  10. Shayna

    Saoirsely? – Great title by the way. I think it’s easy to be an ‘Arm-Chair Republican’ – but truth be told, the UK is destination where many of us Irish live, work and experience life outside of the parishes. The enveloping British title will remain, purely from a geographical, rather than political juxtaposition. Our Welsh and Scottish neighbours must endure a British Passport – If Saoirse Ronan has two – great!

  11. Frenchfarmer

    If a Scot wins a gold at the Olympics it’s a great day for Britain but when it is an English athlete it is GOLD FOR ENGLAND!

  12. Gearóid

    Funny how the most avid posters on this thread all insist (avidly) that it is a nothing-to-see-here issue. Once shouldn’t have been enough, lads, hey?

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