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- PublicationThe Vulnerability of the Northern Ireland Settlement: British Irish Relations, Political Crisis and Brexit(Presses universitaires de Rennes, 2015)The Good Friday Agreement of 1998 is the cornerstone of stability in Northern Ireland. It is, however, vulnerable to changes in British-Irish relations and priorities. This article argues that this is at the root of recent crises and political stalemate in Northern Ireland. It argues that future shocks - not least the threat of British exit from the EU - are likely to increase instability in Northern Ireland and in North-South relations.
- PublicationNorthern Ireland : from multi-phased conflict to multi-levelled settlement(Routledge / Taylor & Francis, 2009-07)The origins of the Northern Ireland conflict fall into three temporally distinct phases, each of which creates a particular socio-structural context that defines a set of protagonists with conflicting interests, more or less defined aims, and a given temporality of conflict. Each is superimposed on the previous phases, further defining and intensifying conflict. The result is a multi-levelled conflict and a multiplicity of aims for protagonists. This provides a useful frame for explanation of the difficulties of negotiating and of implementing an agreed settlement and for assessment of the successes and failures of the 1998 agreement.
681Scopus© Citations 5
- PublicationDoes being Protestant matter? Protestants, minorities and the re-making of ethno-religious identity after the Good Friday Agreement(Routledge, 2009-03)The Good Friday Agreement of 1998 gave an opportunity to remake not just political institutions but ethno-religious distinction in Northern Ireland. This paper looks at the how individuals reconstruct their way of being Protestant in Ireland and Northern Ireland in the context of social and political change. It shows individuals renegotiating their ways of being Protestant, attempting sometimes successfully to change its socio-cultural salience, blurring ethnic boundaries, distinguishing religious and ethno-national narratives, drawing universalistic political norms from their particular religious tradition. It argues that these renegotiations are highly sensitive to the macro-political context. Changes in this context affect individuals through their changing cognitive understandings and strategic interests which, at least in this case, are as important to identification as are social solidarities.
599Scopus© Citations 15
- PublicationEthnicity and religion : redefining the research agenda(Taylor & Francis, 2010-03)This article maps some of the effects when ethnicity and religion overlap. Sometimes one category, with its related values and solidarity, is prioritised; this is expressed in the common view that religion is subsumed in ethnicity, and religious labels become markers of ethnic groups. Sometimes the effects are additive, each source of distinction and group solidarity strengthening the other. Sometimes there are interactive effects, with dynamic and emergent properties producing a more complex field of relationship. After tracing examples and arguing against a reductive approach, three avenues for future research are highlighted. First, mapping patterns of interrelation of ethnicity and religion in cultural distinction-making and group formation, showing the conditions and effects of each. Second, looking at the longer term historical, state and geo-political conditions for change in these relations. Third, reframing theories and concepts so better to grasp the range of ways religion and ethnicity function in social practice.
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