Book Event with Dingle Peninsula author Brenda Ní Shúilleabháin

Sunday, November 30 from 2:00 – 4:00 pm at the Collegian Court, 89 Park Street, Chicopee, MA 01013

Brenda SullivanThe Irish Cultural Center welcomes the public to a reading with Irish author and award-winning film producer Brenda Ní Shúilleabháin and her new book, “ANEAS: Words of Wisdom from the Munster Tradition.”

The event, to be held at Collegian Court, 89 Park St., Chicopee, starting at 2 p.m. on Sunday Nov. 30, is free and open to all. Parking is available and light refreshments will be served.

In the book, Ní Shúilleabháin has compiled a selection from the folklore of Munster, mainly west Kerry, in every genre: poems, songs, rhymes, proverbs, triads, charms, and prayers. It is beautifully illustrated with original photographs by Lanka Haouche Perren, a young Frenchman who lives in Dingle.

Ní Shúilleabháin writes that folklore is exactly that: the distilled wisdom of a people, retained in tales, rhymes, epigrams and fables, passed from generation to generation by word of mouth. It was shared at family hearths on winter evenings, exchanged among men in the fields, among women at the wells. It was wrung from generations of observation, from centuries of experience, from a fundamental desire to live life as well as possible, without unnecessary mistakes. It is difficult to define what constitutes wisdom. Philosophers have published volumes in the attempt. But it is unmistakable when it is encountered, and from the dawn of time people took care to remember and pass on what chimed with their instincts.

Ní Shúilleabháin will talk about the research from which she compiled material for the book. She will also read and explain selected sections.

This event will also feature local guests and ICC members who will explain how the ‘old Irish sayings’ were a hallmark of their childhood, told by parents and grandparents, and kept the Irish alive in their families.

Brenda Ní Shúilleabháin was born and raised in Ventry, and still lives there for a great part of the year. She lived for many years in Dublin, where she was an educator and principal of an elementary school where Irish was taught and spoken. She writes and speaks on the oral histories of men and women, on art, on literature, on travel and on education. She excelled at writing and debating from an early age, again an obvious characteristic of her ongoing work, which is engaging, humorous and highly individual. She is also the author of ‘Men of Ventry’ and the producer of award-winning documentary films ‘Children of the Revolution,’ ‘Dún Chaoin, Daichead Bliain,’ ‘‘Bibeanna,’ ‘Bibeanna Mheiriceá’ and ‘Rince ar Phár.’

Married to Mícheál Mac Ginneá, himself a writer, she has three daughters, Déirdre, Aoileann and Sibéal, and one grand daughter, Nell.

The Irish Cultural Center was established in 1999 to foster an appreciation of Irish culture in Western New England. The mission of the Irish Cultural Center is to cultivate a connection with Ireland, through the arts, culture, history, language, and heritage. The Center offers opportunities to engage in educational, travel, and social events that promote Irish culture.

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