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Latest

Last year
2022
Irish lecturer in US: 'The shadow of campus shootings has loomed large in our lives for years'
CaoimhĂ­n De Barra says threats to safety on campus are always on your mind when you work as a teacher in the US.
Opinion: Raising your children through Irish is the best way to learn the language yourself
The best strategy for creating a bilingual family environment is for one parent to speak the minority language exclusively, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Opinion: The drive for re-election is a major flaw of modern democracy
CaoimhĂ­n de Barra looks at democracy and asks if it prevents politicians from pushing for real change.
All time
Opinion: We should build a 'Gaelollscoil' in the Gaeltacht as a means of reviving the Irish language
On Seachtain na Gaeilge, CaoimhĂ­n De Barra highlights international examples of the rejuvenation of languages and says Ireland should consider similar steps.
Opinion: Trump has been a disaster for democracy - he has laid the ground for fascism
CaoimhĂ­n De Barra looks at Trump’s legacy and the impact his presidency has had on democracy.
Trump's presidency has weakened the electoral college - time for it to go
CaoimhĂ­n de Barra looks at the dual US voting system and says the electoral college has the potential to cause major upheaval now and in future.
Opinion: Many would like compulsory Gaeilge taken off the Leaving Cert, but it's a slippery slope
CaoimhĂ­n De Barra says if we take compulsory Irish off the curriculum, we’re undermining our language and our identity.
Opinion: 'Taoiseach, discussing a united Ireland is still possible - despite the RIC debacle'
CaoimhĂ­n de Barra looks at the possible compromises we would face if a united Ireland became a reality
Opinion: 'The poppy argument in Ireland is an ideological battle that's been raging since the 19th century'
CaoimhĂ­n de Barra looks at nationalism and unionism, and the conflicting emotions people have around the use of the poppy.
Opinion: 'History's special status at Junior Cert level should be celebrated, but the curriculum has major blind spots'
Aspects of Irish history are conspicuous by their absence from the syllabus, writes CaoimhĂ­n de Barra.
Opinion: Why it's important to call out people referring to Shane Lowry as British
CaoimhĂ­n De Barra argues that it’s something to get exercised about.
Opinion: The Leaving Cert might not be perfect but it is fairer than many other systems
The university bribery scandal in the US shows how far some parents will go to secure their child’s college place, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Opinion: Independent Ireland was established through violent revolution - there were few peacemakers
It is important that we don’t judge the events of the Irish revolution against fictional, sanitised versions of the Irish past, writes Caoimhín De Barra.
Opinion: What does it take to raise your children through Irish?
My daughter speaks mostly in English but there are also lots of words that she only knows the Irish for – so she mixes them in, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Opinion: 'You often hear that the Irish language is badly taught in our schools but that is not true'
Compared with other subjects Irish is not badly taught. More students got a B1 or higher in Irish than in French and German combined, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Opinion: How could a second Brexit referendum be undemocratic?
Changing your course of action based on your circumstances is considered common sense for individuals, companies, and governments, so why should Brexit be any different?
Opinion: There are some striking similarities between Irish independence and Brexit
Irish negotiators had to agree that Ireland would remain within the British empire while May’s deal could keep the UK trapped in the EU indefinitely, writes Caoimhín De Barra.
Opinion: 'Of course, no one ever admits to being prejudiced against Travellers'
Bigotry never openly acknowledges its existence, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
The manner in which Gemma O'Doherty's candidacy was railroaded reinforces her main arguments
Political power in Ireland is held entirely in the hands of a small elite, who govern largely in their own interest. The rest of us are on the outside looking in, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Opinion: Our Celtic identity might not be what we think it is
Author CaomhĂ­n De Barra asks about Ireland’s Celtic past, and whether it really is what we think it is.
Sinn FĂ©in and abstentionism: 'The party will eventually need people to take oaths for Ireland'
Abstentionism has been a central policy of Sinn Féin since the party’s foundation in 1905, but condemnation of the practice has sharpened since the Brexit referendum, writes Caoimhín De Barra.
'The seriousness with which Americans take their flag and national anthem is unusual'
Trump continues to exploit this sensitivity to try and boost his popularity, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Do you guys have pizza in Ireland?: 'Most Americans I met knew almost nothing about Ireland'
Their Ireland is the Ireland their ancestors left, often untouched by the changes that have taken place since then, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
'Militant, hard-liners or Nazis' - How those challenging the status quo are labelled
Language is used in a manipulative way to make one side of the debate seem practical and free of ideological bias and the other side as completely unreasonable.
'There's a deep-rooted hatred toward the indigenous culture of Ireland, above all its language'
When Northern Ireland was formed, unionist were determined to kill off the Gaeltacht communities, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Column: 'There should be a presidential election and Michael D shouldn't run'
We live in an extraordinary moment for democratic government, where confidence in the honesty of political leaders is seemingly at an all time low, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
'1918 was a year of monumental importance that had plenty in common with 2018 Ireland'
Here is a look back at that year, with some reflections on the similarities and differences with the Ireland of today, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Brexit: 'The DUP’s hardline policies could be the quickest road to a united Ireland'
“Constitutional integrity” is a myth. The UK has been built on constitutional divergence, writes Caoimhín De Barra.
Opinion: 'Our indifference to our flag and anthem is actually healthy'
Placing legislative restrictions on how our anthem is used would be an unnecessary limitation on our freedom of expression, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Catalan independence: 'Ireland came into being as a result of a similar "illegal" action'
To deny Catalans the right to a referendum will likely only win converts to the cause of independence, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
'The Leaving Cert is a valuable life lesson. If you want something, you need to work hard to get it'
I have never forgotten the idea that I needed to put in long hours if I wanted to achieve something, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Northern Ireland: 'Most people would probably welcome a redrawn border'
All options, radical or otherwise for Northern Ireland, need to be weighed up, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Border poll: 'Nationalists will say the recent Assembly elections show things are trending in their direction'
Nationalists may be fobbed off in the short term, but this will lead to demands for clarification from the British government about what conditions will permit a border poll, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.
Opinion: 'To say Britishness is authentic, while denying Irishness is quaffing one’s own Kool-Aid too deeply'
Melanie Phillips tried to use history to delegitimise the nationalist aspirations of Sinn FĂ©in and the Scottish Nationalist Party, writes Caoimhin De Barra.
The case for ending state support of Irish language is littered with dubious 'facts'
For starters, we don’t spend €1.2 billion in preserving An Ghaeilge each year, says CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.