”A turning tide in the life of man” is a film by French director Loïs Jourdain about fisherman John O’Brian from Árainn Mhór.
John puts himself, as ‘David against Goliath’, in the heart of the new reform of the Common Fisheries in Brussels, to try to understand and change the system that took everything from him. We see the Irish fishermen’s efforts to survive and their long quest to find answers to their questions; traveling, meeting with politicians, gathering together other islands communities from all around Europe, querying MEPs, working with International NGOs to understand the political process and convincing those who hold the power to join their fight and make a difference.
As John gets closer to the European Parliament, circumstances force him into a more important role. He becomes one of the few EU small fishermen representatives and advisor by default in the new reform process. Discovering that he’s only a little piece of a larger puzzle, for the first time, John has to envisage the bigger picture for himself and like the Members of the European Commission, John and his people also have to take into consideration, environmental, economic and social issues.
Árainn Mhór is definitely one of Europe’s most endangered island societies, masterly described in Nicolas Loncle’s “Analysis of an insular system and its resources. A contribution to the elaboration of a development strategy for Arranmore Island”. Árainn Mhór is also one of the Smilegov islands in the ESIN cluster, the report can be found here https://europeansmallislands.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/arranmore.pdf
Árrain Mhór photograph by Loïs Jourdain