NUI Galway Launches DVD on Máirtín Ó Cadhain

Nov 20 2006 Posted: 00:00 GMT

20 November 2006: NUI Galway has launched a limited edition DVD, Claíocha Arda, which describes the life and work of Máirtín Ó Cadhain, one of the most prominent Irish language writers of the twentieth century. The limited edition DVD gives an insight into Máirtín Ó Cadhain's vision and life and is part of the centenary celebrations of his birth. The DVD which is subtitled in English has been issued by Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway's national institute pioneering third-level education through the Irish language.

Claíocha Arda roughly translates as 'fortification', which is a metaphor for the challenges Ó Cadhain faced in his lifetime. While television footage of Máirtín Ó Cadhain is in short supply, this DVD is a collection of the best of RTÉ's archive. Ó Cadhain himself talks about his youth, school life, republicanism, starting to write, literature, and what he believed was the root of all storytelling - love. "Silim gan an grá nach féidir scéalaíocht a dhéanamh/Without love there is no storytelling", Máirtín once said.

Peadar Mac an Iomaire, Director of Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, comments, "Máirtín Ó Cadhain was a pioneer of Irish-language modernism and his literary legacy is a national treasure. Claíocha Arda allows us an insight into the inspirations behind Máirtín's writings in his own words. This film is an inspiration to the young and the not so young when they see the loyalty and devotion of this man to his own community. Academics, historians, writers and students are just some of the audiences who will enjoy this DVD, which is certain to become a collector's item."

The DVD contains an extract from Ó Cadhain's novel Cré na Cille and describes the inspiration for its characters. Ó Cadhain spoke Russian and was interested in the major Russian writers such as Dostoevsky, Chekhov and Maxim Gorki. Reflecting this, music by Shostakovich, Rachmaninov and Stravinsky is used on the DVD to add atmosphere to the black and white footage.

The limited edition DVD is available for sale by contacting Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge on 091 492428 or


Notes to editors:

For more information, please contact Bríd Seoige: Tel. 00 353 91 495 302, Email:


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