Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Why Irish people feel they have no alternative but to celebrate St Patrick's Day

Date:
March 12, 2013
Source:
Northumbria University
Summary:
Research into why Irish people feel they have no alternative but to celebrate St Patrick's Day.

Irish people will feel compelled to drink alcohol to celebrate St Patrick's Day this Sunday -- whether they want to or not -- according to a Northumbria University academic.

Related Articles


Alcohol consumption is romanticised in Irish culture and many Irish people regard drinking on St Patrick's Day as a symbol of patriotism to their country, the research reveals.

Marketing lecturer Matthew Kearney asked 70 Irish people in their 20s and 30s to keep shopping diaries and analyse their feelings about their spending as part of his PhD into the experiences of and attitudes to shopping with a particular focus on excessive shopping habits. He then conducted in-depth interviews with a third of those who took part.

The research revealed that every single person who took part in the research celebrated St Patrick's Day and many maxed out their credit cards and borrowed from friends and family to support the celebrations.

Even those who declared themselves as teetotal the rest of the year felt compelled to drink alcohol to celebrate St Patrick's -- a day when it is estimated that more than 13,000,000 pints of Guinness will be consumed around the world.

Matthew, from Coleraine in Northern Ireland, said: "Alcohol consumption, when placed in the context of Ireland becomes instantly romanticised, attributed to one's underlying Celtic soul. Ireland is synonymous with alcohol; although Ireland boasts world heritage sites, titanic museums and the birth and death sites of numerous authors and poets, its most popular tourist attraction is the Guinness Storehouse.

"When Barack Obama and Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip make a point of publicly enjoying a Guinness experience while visiting Ireland, it starts to become even more apparent that alcohol consumption is so completely intertwined with 'Irishness.'"

The research highlighted the perceived cultural importance of celebrating St Patrick's Day. While everyone who took part in the research 'did something for St Patrick's Day,' not all those with a partner celebrated Valentine's Day, for example.

The fact that the research sample was split almost equally between men and women shows that St Patrick's Day celebrations are far more than a symptom of 'lad culture.' Participants who had no intention of celebrating eventually gave in to the mockery and cajoling of their Irish friends and spent considerable amounts of money on the day with one woman recalling spending £350 on celebrating.

Other participants recalled spending the day away from Ireland but being pressured to join in the celebrations by their English counterparts.

Matthew added: "Many of the people who took part in the research seemed to feel an inescapable pressure to drink as though it is part of Irish consumers' culture and heritage. When this is combined with the expectations of others, created by the concerted efforts of marketers, the result appears to be inevitable.

"However, many of those I interviewed expressed extreme regret in the aftermath of the day while others demonstrated a learned helplessness towards stopping drinking on the day. There seems to be a perception that it's their duty," he added.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Northumbria University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Northumbria University. "Why Irish people feel they have no alternative but to celebrate St Patrick's Day." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 March 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130312092442.htm>.
Northumbria University. (2013, March 12). Why Irish people feel they have no alternative but to celebrate St Patrick's Day. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130312092442.htm
Northumbria University. "Why Irish people feel they have no alternative but to celebrate St Patrick's Day." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130312092442.htm (accessed October 30, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Techy Tots Are Forefront of London's Baby Show

Techy Tots Are Forefront of London's Baby Show

AP (Oct. 28, 2014) — Moms and Dads get a more hands-on approach to parenting with tech-centric products for raising their little ones. (Oct. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cocoa Could Be As Good For Memory As It Is For A Sweet Tooth

Cocoa Could Be As Good For Memory As It Is For A Sweet Tooth

Newsy (Oct. 27, 2014) — Researchers have come up with another reason why dark chocolate is good for your health. A substance in the treat can reportedly help with memory. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Five-Year-Olds Learn Coding as Britain Eyes Digital Future

Five-Year-Olds Learn Coding as Britain Eyes Digital Future

AFP (Oct. 27, 2014) — Coding has become compulsory for children as young as five in schools across the UK. Making it the first major world economy to overhaul its IT teaching and put programming at its core. Duration: 02:19 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) — A scandal involving bogus classes and inflated grades at the University of North Carolina was bigger than previously reported, a new investigation found. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:  

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile iPhone Android Web
    Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins