The Gaelic Athletic Association Essay

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The Gaelic Athletic Association

After the Great Potato Famine in the country of Ireland, the culture and pride of the land began to disappear. The Irish had lost around one million people after this tragedy struck the land, and the Irish morale was low. People began to emigrate to other countries and British customs and language were beginning to take over. It became evident that the Irish needed a cultural revolution to restore all that had been lost in their culture. The solution to this problem was found in the creation the Gaelic Athletic Association. While its main focus may have only appeared to involve sports, it was very influential in the cultural and political revolutions to come in the future. The GAA has been described as a
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It was enacted to give the Irish something to follow and cheer about in an attempt to raise feelings of pride across communities. When the GAA was created, it was separated into individual districts throughout Ireland. This same occurrence has happened in the United States, as many communities rally around a sports team. Through emigration from Ireland, Irish sports and customs have spread across the world to countries such as the United States and even as far as Australia.

Politics were almost a bigger focus for the GAA than the sporting aspect itself because of the political instability and British influence. The GAA was intent on reaching the people in the countryside because these were the people that could fall out of contact with Ireland and adopt British ideals and customs. Cusack even included Archbishop Croke as his patron in order to gain as much support as possible and also to gain help in spreading the popularity of the GAA. (Collins 111) Cusack and Croke were able to revamp the Irish countryside along with spreading nationalistic feelings. The Irish in the countryside began to be included in Irish ways instead of being isolated and this was crucial in establishing a separatist democratic culture (Hutchinson 161). Many of these people utilized the GAA to gain political influence in Ireland (Cohan 221). The people in the