Login (DCU Staff Only)
Login (DCU Staff Only)

DORAS | DCU Research Repository

Explore open access research and scholarly works from DCU

Advanced Search

The slíbhín and the créatúr: an examination of the lived experiences of regional or minority language users within the criminal justice System

McEvoy, Gearóidín (2022) The slíbhín and the créatúr: an examination of the lived experiences of regional or minority language users within the criminal justice System. PhD thesis, Dublin City University.

This thesis looks at how users of regional or minority languages engage with their right to a fair trial in the criminal justice system under the United Nations and Council of Europe systems of human rights. This is a socio-legal study of Irish speakers and Deaf, Irish Sign Language users in Ireland, investigating the lived experiences of those who have interacted with the criminal justice system. Identity and identity perception are central to this project. Identity is both internally constructed and externally imposed on individuals. When the internally constructed identity is misunderstood, oversimplified or not visible to the majority or the authority, an othered minority can be treated with unfair bias and stereotyped. In the course of the research, two particular stereotypes or tropes arose, which Irish-speakers and Deaf people were faced with generally when they interacted with the criminal justice system. Firstly is the ‘créatúr’, coming from the Irish word meaning pitiful one, wretch or creature. It applied to Deaf people who were not seen as autonomous, competent beings, but rather as disabled and incapable of independent life. Secondly is the ‘slíbhín’ or the sneak or troublemaker. This narrative applied to both Irish speakers and Deaf people, but was most attributable to the former. The use of Irish was largely seen as malicious, and an attempt to frustrate the legal process, rather than an exercise in identity. The interviewed regional or minority language users were not seen in light of their true identities and this impacted their journeys through the criminal justice system. This research explores beyond the limited impact of the minimum standards of the right to a fair trial, incorporating external factors that impact the right to a fair trial for RML-users, such as language stereotypes, police culture, and access to justice.
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Date of Award:February 2022
Supervisor(s):Conway, Vicky and Ní Mhuirthile, Tanya
Subjects:Humanities > Irish language
Humanities > Language
Humanities > Translating and interpreting
Social Sciences > Law
Social Sciences > Identity
DCU Faculties and Centres:DCU Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Science > School of Law and Government
Use License:This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License. View License
ID Code:26547
Deposited On:15 Feb 2022 16:54 by Tanya Ní Mhuirthile . Last Modified 22 Feb 2024 13:21

Full text available as:

[thumbnail of PhD for the Library.pdf]
PDF - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader
Creative Commons: Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0


Downloads per month over past year

Archive Staff Only: edit this record