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'Tinkers'Synge and the Cultural History of the Irish Traveller$
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Mary Burke

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199566464

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199566464.001.0001

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(p.271) Conclusion

Mary Burke (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

The conclusion posits that the ‘tinker’ trope continues to appeal to those seeking a motif of insurrection or authenticity in a manner that would currently be almost unthinkable in any other First World country with a comparable indigenous minority. However, in light of the growing awareness of the history of this cultural construct, it may soon no longer be possible for a figure identified with an actual contemporary minority to be naively deployed as an apolitical and ahistorical symbol of menace or exoticness. In order to suggest the manner in which the Traveller is beginning to be represented without recourse to either positive or negative stereotype, the conclusion closes with an examination of Perry Ogden’s Pavee Lackeen, a politically-alert but never polemical film that avoids objectifying its Traveller subject. Nevertheless, a true breakthrough in the representation of Travellers will have been reached when Traveller creators of visual images of Travellers by Travellers finally emerge.

Keywords:   awareness, Perry Ogden, Pavee Lackee, stereotype, breakthrough

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