||I encouraged a
group of people to write and publish their own work with this book. Other eminent authors were also invited to contribute their views
on the subject. The book was
forwarded by some of Wales’ foremost
people on Welsh affairs to whom I was once privileged and honoured
to be a student of, on one of the courses that they had designed: Wales
– A Study of Cultural and National Identity.
It was their influence and the enthusiasm of the Rhiwfawr
Writers’ Group that was mainly responsible for my decision to publish
the bilingual book Hunaniaeth Gymreig/Welsh Identity.
are a few responses to the book:
Hart from Gloucester wrote:
I wish to say how much I enjoyed the stories of your writing group.
They were a breath of fresh air after reading The Book of Modern British
Dr W.T.R. Pryce
of Cardiff wrote:
Of the many
hundreds of adult students (thousands if we count my TV, radio programmes
and my written texts) that I taught in my 30 years as a member of the
academic staff of the Open University, apart from my numerous research
students, none has ever published anything, that I am aware of, based or
derived from their studies with us at the OU. So, I am particularly appreciative of what you have achieved.
A review of the
book by the Llais (The Swansea Valley Welsh Newspaper):
Cyfrol i'w chadw ar y bwrdd yn
ymyl y gwely yw hon. Diau y gwna i bob un a'i darlleno holi pa ddylanwadau
sydd wedi bod ar waith yn nyfnder ein bod ac a sicrhaodd na fedrwn ddianc
rhag ein hunaniaeth Gymreig.
Contents of the
Yr Awduron a’u
The Authors and their
& Gwynfor Evans (Cefnfab)
Welsh Gentry (1750 -1850) (Brian Davies, Ystradgynlais)
Escape (Marjorie Showalla)
(Jean E. Williams)
A Shot in the Dark (Leon)
Picking up the
Pieces (Bryan Davies,
Welsh Identity without Illusion (Brian Davies, Pontypridd)
is Where the Heart is (Phyllis Wagstaff)
An Epynt Shepherd (Annette Thomas)
my Soul I am Welsh (Maggie Wagstaff)
Mewnlifiad ar Bentrefi Cymru (Maggie Wagstaff)
Gobaith Cymru (Cefnfab)
Y Golygydd yng
Nghwmni Clive Rowlands
(J. Beynon Phillips)
Newydd (J. Beynon Phillips)
Werin Cymru (Cefnfab)
Very Welsh (Euros Jones Evans)
yw’r Ots (Y
Prifardd Dylan Iorwerth)
Authors and their Works
first mentioned authors comprise the Rhiwfawr Writers’ Group.
Leon is a former miner and has written a story about an incident at
a colliery . . . and, as to be expected, it is black humour.
Roger Whatcott has written about what ‘Welsh identity’ means to
him, through his experience of moving from Portsmouth to Wales.
Phyllis Wagstaff, our octogenarian writer, recalls her school days
in Derbyshire and how they eventually proved to be beneficial in adapting
to a Welsh way of life. Maggie
Wagstaff compares her earlier life in Chesterfield with the one that she
enjoys now in Wales. Her
first story is in English whilst she has written the second one entirely
in Welsh. Jean E. Williams
writes about the warmth of the Welsh people that were so supportive to her
during a domestic crisis. Marjorie Showalla relates her experience as a matron in
the Middle East. She explains
how she was continually caught up in the conflict that occurred there from
the 1960s onwards and how her Welsh feelings caused a conflict within
herself during this particular time.
Preceding this story is an article written by Cefnfab about events
that happened in Cardiganshire during the Nineteenth Century, which are
similar to Marjorie’s feelings whilst she was escaping from Aden. Cefnfab has also contributed poetry and articles in both
English and Welsh about the Saint Fagan Folk Museum, Urdd Gobaith Cymru
and Dylan Thomas’ involvement with Gwynfor Evans.
The authors who have
been invited to contribute to the book include J. Beynon Phillips, a
highly successful poet, who writes about the demise of the Welsh language. Iwan Bryn Williams is another brilliant poet who relates what
he remembers of the late Emrys Davies, who played cricket for Glamorgan. Rugby
is also mentioned in the book through the Editor’s conversation with
Clive Rowlands in the Swansea Valley dialect. Clive recollects how Welsh singing has always been so inspirational
to him. It is interesting to note that three of the authors share the
name Brian Davies. One of
them is an Ystradgynlais man who writes about how former Welsh squires
attempted to copy the lifestyle of their English counterparts, whilst
Brian Davies, Curator of the Pontypridd Museum, focuses on the complex
identity of a valley’s mixed origin. The subject of music has not been
forgotten, for there is a most informative and interesting article that
examines the various sources of Welsh music.
This has been written by Bryan Davies of Ferndale, the well-known
accompanist. Annette Thomas of Upper Chapel has written about her
grandfather who was ‘An Epynt Shepherd’.
Euros Jones Evans’ article reveals another facet
regarding this complex subject.
There is a superb poem in the form of cynghanedd by the established poet Karen Owen.
It is a cywydd in memory of Wmffra a very much loved eisteddfod singer. Y Prifardd Dylan Iorwerth, winner of the Crown at the Llanelli
National Eisteddfod in the year 2000, has also kindly contributed a fine
piece of work on the Welsh identity.
files of the book launch are available on the media
Available soon ...
and sad stories, poetry and Anglo-Welsh articles about the last century.
of how to obtain these books can be obtained by writing to Cefnfab