Oileanaich PhD

Oileanaich MLitt

  • Sandra Malley
  • Veronique Heijnsbroek


Beth Cole, Oileanach PhD 

My PhD considers language variation and change in a Gaelic community, focusing particularly on changes in case morphophonology. By studying native Gaelic speakers of a variety of ages across North and South Uist, which is around 65% Gaelic speaking and where the language can still be heard in daily life, I aim to investigate the amount and type of changes present in the Gaelic case system, and analyse these changes within the context of underlying language shift.

Linguistic changes of this nature can often be a symptom of language shift, resulting from speakers changing from using a minority language in their daily lives to a dominant language in the area. However, variation is also a normal process in language change, which occurs without the existence of language shift. The difficulty is determining which changes are natural, and which potentially pose a threat to the language’s continued use and ultimately its existence.

By studying both linguistic changes and the community’s patterns of language use and attitudes towards Gaelic, I hope to be able to describe the linguistic situation in Uist more fully than has previously been attempted, and contribute to our understanding of the processes involved in language shift and the present state of the Gaelic language in Scotland. This PhD is funded by Soillse.

Contact me

Email: e.cole@abdn.ac.uk 

Office: Room A55, Taylor Building, Gaelic Studies

Supervised by


Ingeborg Birnie, Oileanach PhDInge Birnie

Tha toraidhean nan cunntasan-sluaigh agus rannsachadh càileachdail a’ sealltainn gu bheil a’ Ghàidhlig ann an Albainn air crìonadh gu mòr tron 20mh linn, an dà chuid a thaobh àireimh shlàin de luchd-labhairt ach cuideachd a thaobh bitheantas agus roinntean cleachdadh a’ chànain.

Tha Achd na Gàidhlig (Alba) 2005 air bun-stèidh oifigeil a thoirt dhan iomairt gus cànan agus dualchas na Gàidhlig a ghlèidheadh. Fo sholarachadh an Achd seo chaidh Bòrd na Gàidhlig a stèidheachadh mar bhuidheann poblach gus a dhleastanasan a choileanadh gus inbhe na Gàidhlig a ghlèidheadh mar chànan oifigeil dha bheilear a’ sealltainn an aon spèis ‘s a tha dhan Bheurla ann an Albainn. Tha e mar uallachadh air Bòrd na Gàidhlig ùghdarrasan poblach a chomharrachadh a dh’fheumas planaichean Gàidhlig ullachadh.

Tha an rannsachadh PhD seo airson an dàimh eadar in-stèidheachadh na Gàidhlig ann an roinn phoblach agus poileasaidhean cànain de facto ann am paraiste Steòrnobhaigh, am prìomh bhaile ann an sgìre nas treasa a thaobh na Gàidhlig, a sgrùdadh. Thèid modail de phoileasaidh cànain aig Spolsky a chleachdadh mar bhun-stèidh an rannsachaidh seo. Sa chiad dol a-mach thèid manaidsearachd cànain tro phoileasaidhean agus planaichean nan buidhnean poblach a sgrùdadh, nìthear an uair sin coimeas eadar cleachdadh cànain aig ìre oifigeil tro lèireas cànanach agus àrainneachd fhuaimneach ach cuideachd cleachdaidhean agus ideòlasan cànain an luchd-labhairt fhèin. 

Cuiribh fios thugam:

Post-d: r01iab13@abdn.ac.uk 

Oifis: Seòmar 55, Taylor Buildling, Eòlas Gàidhlig

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