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Inscribing Ethnicity: A Preliminary Analysis of Gaelic Headstone Inscriptions in Eastern Nova Scotia and Cape Breton

1
Department of History, St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, NS B2G 2W5, Canada
2
Department of Celtic Studies, St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, NS B2G 2W5, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Genealogy 2018, 2(3), 29; https://doi.org/10.3390/genealogy2030029
Received: 25 May 2018 / Revised: 2 August 2018 / Accepted: 2 August 2018 / Published: 15 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cemeteries and Churchyards)
Focusing on the verbal rather than the visual elements of early and more modern headstones in eastern Nova Scotia and Cape Breton, this essay will comment on a selection of Gaelic headstone inscriptions, highlighting such elements as word choice (whether secular or religious), cemetery location, time period, and the deceased’s background. Despite the striking paucity of Gaelic examples, it is our objective to discuss why Gaelic had a limited presence in Nova Scotia’s pioneer Scottish immigrant cemeteries and to demonstrate how these cemeteries were contested sites, which mirrored ongoing tensions between assimilation and cultural retention. In sum, this article will assess the importance of cemeteries as material articulations of language use and language maintenance among Nova Scotia’s diasporic Scots, set against the wider background of their struggles, aspirations, and shared values. View Full-Text
Keywords: Gaelic; cemeteries; Scottish immigrants; Nova Scotia Gaelic; cemeteries; Scottish immigrants; Nova Scotia
MDPI and ACS Style

Stanley-Blackwell, L.; Linkletter, M. Inscribing Ethnicity: A Preliminary Analysis of Gaelic Headstone Inscriptions in Eastern Nova Scotia and Cape Breton. Genealogy 2018, 2, 29.

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