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  • Publication
    A Lacanian psychoanalytic interpretation of conflict in Northern Ireland
    (University College Dublin. Institute for British-Irish Studies, 2001)
    The aim of this paper is to demonstrate the power of Lacanian theory to bring to light the unconscious dynamics at work in the formation of ethno-national political identities. I begin by identifying the need for a Lacanian approach to communal identity. I then apply Lacanian psychoanalysis to interviews I have carried out into republicans and loyalists in Belfast, Northern Ireland, highlighting what it is both communities are in denial of as they constitute their self-interpretations. I point out how such denial helps sustain or reproduce relations of domination. I conclude that Lacanian psychoanalysis enhances our understanding and study of inter-religious and ethno-national conflicts and can be readily applied in conflict management.