6 Features of the Irish Expressive Style of Communication

Western European cultures are similar to each other in their “Western” cultural features (Karandashev, 2021a). Nevertheless, they are diverse within western Europe.

Despite the fact that they are all allegedly Western cultures, their expressive styles vary in a number of ways. Each of Western Europe’s neighboring countries has its own culturally distinct expressive style in interpersonal communication. Their cultures are also pretty different from those of other western European societies.

In other articles, I described American, French, German, and Scandinavian styles of communication (Karandashev, 2021a). Here is the Irish one.

Irish Appreciation of Companionship

The traditional Irish ways of life have embraced their favor and enthusiasm for companionship. They tend to reside in close proximity to their fellow citizens. They like social gatherings with peers and chatting.

Irish emigrants still prefer to congregate in neighborhoods that are predominantly Irish. Their cultural sameness apparently attracts them to flock and live nearby with others of their nationality.

It is commonly known that Irish people are generally quite emotional. They are generally outgoing, gregarious, and openly expressive. In this regard, they differ from the people of England, Iceland, and Scandinavian neighboring countries, who are more reserved and private in their lives and emotions.

How Emotional Are the Irish People?

Public displays of emotions are common in Irish culture. On the other hand, the Irish are not as good at expressing their emotions as they are at feeling them. There is no means that can be used to assess the emotions that an Irish person feels. And the more feelings a person experiences, the more difficult it is for them to convey those feelings.

People of Ireland and Irish descent are animated speakers and very emotionally expressive. Their story-telling is often quite poetic in expression. It is common for them to tell funny stories. Their expressions of suffering are also culturally acceptable (Greeley, 1979, 1981; McGoldrick, 1996).

The Irish Sense of Humor

In Irish cultural norms, humor and laughter are valued as ways to communicate one’s emotions.

Humor is used in Irish communication in a variety of ways. In general, humor is utilized to make people laugh, feel good, and, overall, inspire a warm spirit in conversation. People can utilize humor as a way to express acceptance and attachment to those involved in the conversation. The Irish people are witty and sometimes embellish their stories with jokes and anecdotes.

The Irish people also use humor to lighten the atmosphere when someone violates societal rules of behavior. They commonly like clever humor, as well as sarcasm and “slagging,” which can include insults and teasing. This type of humor is well-intentioned and is not meant to offend.

Humor might also be employed as a defense mechanism and a coping strategy in a self-deprecating or humorous manner.

Irish Tendency to Indirect Communication

Irish people tend to be modest and don’t like exaggerating or bragging about themselves. In Irish culture, being too loud and making a lot of noise is seen as rude and off-putting.

Irish people tend to be indirect in their interpersonal communication.

For example, when you offer an Irish fellow to buy a drink, they may answer “ah, no,” even though they may want to accept your offer. So, it is wise to repeat your offer a couple of times before they l accept it.

The Irish people are generally warm and friendly in their interpersonal dispositions. They try to avoid conflict and go to great lengths to remain polite throughout the conversation. They may also avoid expressing their displeasure or disagreement directly. Instead, they will use subtle and concealed cues. For instance, it can be changing the subject or employing humor.

Cultural Peculiarities of Irish Voices

They generally speak with soft tones and have the ingressive sound of voices. For example, during conversations, some Irish people may inhale or inject short breaths while saying “yes” to express agreement. It sounds like a gasp followed by the word “yes.” The linguistic mannerism of making this noise is culturally normal.

Nonverbal Irish Communication

When speaking, people in Irish culture generally maintain an arm’s length distance from others. They do not push each other in community spaces like public transportation and queues.

Although Irish people generally exhibit their warm and friendly disposition towards others in their nonverbal behavior, they are somewhat reserved in physical contact with others. The Irish people are emotionally positive and expressive. Nevertheless, excessive hand gestures are not common for them. Still, they do not keep their hands entirely still during conversation. It is unusual for an Irish person to point in the direction of what they are talking about. They may nod or jerk their head or chin in that direction.

The Irish people usually restrain themselves from displaying their physical affections in public. In physical contact, men seem to be less comfortable than women. They are less inclined to touch each other. Nevertheless, men frequently give each other friendly slaps or kind pats on the back and make other gestures. For many Irish people, consistent eye contact is seen as a sign of involvement and trust in conversation. Therefore, it is culturally normative to maintain frequent eye contact. However, it should not be constant to avoid an awkward feeling of discomfort.