Islands without Cars with Kira Hesser

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Ireland's inis Meain

According to legend, in the l7th century, Oliver Cromwell, the fanatical Protestant 'Lord Protector' of England gave the Irish Catholics a choice: they could go to hell or go to Connacht. Some went further still -all the way to three ruggedly beautiful islands off of Ireland's west coast. Following in the footsteps of great Irish writers, 'Ireland's Inis Meain' explores Ireland's pre-colonial past as the 150 Gaelic-speaking inhabitants of this wet rock in the Atlantic figure out how to manage their legacy and lifestyle just outside of the contaminating influences of the modern world. The innovations - like a luxurious and exclusive new hotel and a sweater factory that sells to the likes of Barney's - are controlled carefully with an eye toward tradition and the environment. This program celebrates an island that is the repository of Irish culture, Irish island cuisine that is locally gathered, organically grown and beautifully prepared and reveals what it takes to knit a sweater that bears little resemblance to the fisherman's sweaters. In the process, we hear one of Ireland's noted poets and fiddle players, learn to pour a proper Guinness and discover what inspired the Irish Nationalist imagination.

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