The University of the Third Age (DLDK)

Future Events Programme

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Feral children: their linguistic development.

Philippe Hamel.

  • 📅Tuesday, June 18, 2024
  • 🕥10:30 - 11:30

Feral (or wild) children grow up without social contact, without linguistic stimulation. They are either subjected to ill treatment by uncommunicative "carers", or brought up by animals, or surviving in total isolation by their own resources. This talk will concentrate on four feral children, describe the circumstances of their early lives and the efforts of society to bring them into the fold through language teaching and patient socialization. We will briefly consider two conflicting theories that attempt to explain why the linguistic development of feral children is extremely difficult and in numerous cases impossible.

Philippe Hamel studied English and French literatures at the University of Upper Normandy in Rouen. Whilst teaching French in various branches of the Irish Civil Service he studied at Trinity College Dublin where he obtained his Higher Diploma in Education in 1974. He then taught French, German and Spanish at secondary school level. He studied Theoretical Linguistics at University College Dublin where he lectured in Syntax, Semantics and Pragmatics whilst pursuing his research in the logic of tenses and Speech Act Theory. He obtained his Ph.D. in 1982. For the pleasure of French readers, Philippe has published a book of short stories.




The life and Music of Jean Sibelius.

Kirsten Briggs.

  • 📅Tuesday, June 25, 2024
  • 🕥10:30 - 11:30

Sibelius was born in Finland in 1865 and composed over 500 pieces of music. A major influence on his music was that he held a deep interest in the myths, ideologies and legends of Finland as we shall hear in his music.

Sibelius had a deep interest in the flora and fauna of Finland and these feelings played a very important role in the construction of his music.

The beauty of the Finnish landscape and his interest in its wildlife also influenced and became apparent in his music.

Sibelius is probably best known for his Violin Concerto but above all for his patriotic symphonic poem "Finlandia" that he composed in 1899. This piece received its premiere performance on July 2nd 1900 to great acclaim, not only by the Finnish people but in global terms also.

"Finlandia" became the ultimate expression and desire of the Finnish people for their independence and glory when Finland was valiantly attempting to avoid being controlled by Czarist Russia.

Independence was achieved through non-violent uprising by the Finnish people who then became part of the EU, joined NATO last year and remain an acclaimed independent state today.

We will listen to a range of great music by Sibelius and also hear a little bit about Finland as a country.