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Former research student publishes new book

29 February 2024

A man smiling on a sunny day.
Dr Patrick Carlin

A former research student at the School of Welsh has published a new book.

The book, ‘Political Community in Minority Language Writing: Claiming Difference, Seeking Commonality’, by Dr Patrick Carlin ac published by Palgrave Macmillan, discusses a somewhat paradoxical phenomenon: how attachments, commitments and claims regarding general or universal values and requirements belonging to the fabric of humanity as a whole are expressed in many different languages while also forming part of specific historical and cultural contexts.

The book includes case studies and a comparative analysis of the work of 3 authors writing in a European minority language, as well as a treatment of how they envision the relationship between national political community and such universal human requirements.

The book also presents, for the first time to English-speaking readers, a detailed treatment of the work of the Basque poet and novelist Joseba Sarrionandia (1958–) and Catalan priest, author and civil disobedience campaigner Lluís Maria Xirinacs (1932–2007), whilst linking these authors' perception of 'foundational universalism' with the work of the Irish novelist, short story writer and language campaigner Máirtín Ó Cadhain (1906–1970).

It took Dr Carlin 3 years to write the book after completing his doctorate with the School of Welsh. He started his doctorate, under the supervision of Professor Diarmait Mac Giolla Chríost, in October 2016 and finished it in January 2020.

Dr Carlin said: "I received extremely valuable input from several members of staff and was also fortunate to receive financial support from the school to conduct an interview with Joseba Sarrionandia in Havana at the end of 2017."

Speaking about what inspired him to write the book, Dr Carlin said: "I have lived in 4 countries in Europe where a minority or non-statewide language is spoken and I was keen to consider writing in 3 of these languages in the context of the fact that the concept of difference is still very much alive in the 21st century while at the same time other phenomena, e.g. the speed and reach of technology, are seemingly bringing together in new ways communities of people who were previously geographically dispersed."

The book has already been published online and the print version will be published at the end of February 2024.

Congratulations on your success, Dr Carlin!

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