Skip header navigation

University of Stirling



Gaelic sport, soccer and Irishness in Scotland

Bradley J (2007) Gaelic sport, soccer and Irishness in Scotland. Sport in Society, 10 (3), pp. 439-456.

This essay reflects on the history of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) in Scotland. A significant number of Irish immigrants and their offspring transformed the social, political and religious make-up of much of Scottish society in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. However, despite a considerable amount of Irish cultural activity, and an important GAA presence in Scotland, the Association has rarely acquired a vibrancy that matched the size of its diasporic constituency. This study looks at the vicissitudes in the life of the GAA, considers some of the reasons for the organization's comparative weaknesses and reflects on the contribution of Gaelic sports to the construction of Irishness in modern Scotland. While the history of the GAA is an essential part of the ongoing narrative of the Irish in Scotland, this essay recognizes that Irishness and sport in Scotland cannot be explored without some deliberation on the supporter culture of Celtic Football Club. The essay therefore reflects on Celtic's significance for the Irish diasporic community in Scottish society and the ways that this has impacted on the historical positioning of the GAA within Scotland. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved) (from the journal abstract)

Sport in Society: Volume 10, Issue 3

Author(s)Bradley, Joseph
Publication date31/05/2007
Publication date online11/05/2007
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Place of publicationUnited Kingdom
Scroll back to the top