Certainly when Anglophone students of Irish cultural nationalism paid any attention to the language movement at all it was often to briefly quote Hyde on de-Anglicization
and then shudder at the benighted and claustrophobic intellectual isolation his ideas inspired.
This emphasis on de-Anglicization
vis-a-vis an ancestral language was rooted in the belief that the Irish were a distinct people with a particular cultural identity (Green 1972, 18-19, 24).
Haunted English: The Celtic Fringe, the British Empire and De-Anglicization
. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
(16) Such aspirations were based upon the pursuit of a vigorous program of de-anglicization
and required a vibrant reappraisal of what had been lost to the boom of the colonial "cultural bomb." (17) Keenly aware of the social, emotional, and psychological damage caused by colonization, Hyde sought to redress this historical wound.
According to O'Connor, he sees the "paradoxical goal of de-Anglicization
" as an attempt to "regain an Ur-character and to eschew all preconceptions of national character." This project is paradoxical in part because it requires the deployment of stereotype in order to get at that which is not typical and (given the origin of the word) that which is neither stable nor scripted.