Why is there no Nelson Mandela figure in Northern Ireland?

Mandela has come to personify the values needed to make a transition from war to peace, but transitions from rule by a privileged minority to a more inclusive democratic system have occurred elsewhere without producing heroic leaders. Bill Kissane compares the South African and Northern Irish transitions and highlights that while Mandela did have the combination of personal, ethical and […]

January 13th, 2014|Bill Kissane|0 Comments|

Belfast’s Peace Walls: Can you remove the conflict architecture?

The ‘peace walls’ that still divide Belfast, built by the British army in 1969, are a daily reminder that fundamental issues relating to community identity, integration and sectarianism remain unresolved. In May 2013, the Northern Ireland Executive committed to reducing or remove all peace walls by 2023. However, within six months of the pledge a retractable, security fence in the at […]

David Cameron is unlikely to get the results he wants out of the G8 Summit

This morning sees the start of the G8 Summit, hosted by David Cameron and taking place at a golf resort in Northern Ireland. Chris Brown argues that the government will not get what it desires out of the meetings. Agreements on trade, tax and transparency are unlikely and, though the ongoing Syrian conflict will figure prominently in informal discussions, he […]

To understand the present troubles in Belfast, we need to go back to the dying days of the old ‘Orange State’

The disturbances prompted by Belfast City Council’s decision to restrict their flying of the Union flag can seem bewildering to outsiders. However Eric Kaufmann argues that they make sense within the broader historical context, as the dismantling of a centuries old tradition has come to symbolise Protestant fears of a loss of power in what is rapidly becoming a Catholic majority country.  Belfast City Council’s decision […]

Is the Northern Ireland Peace Process Flagging?

Recent disturbances in Belfast naturally invite questions as to how this is grounded in a longer history of conflict within Northern Ireland. Jim Hughes explains how the current social strife is deeply rooted in the past but is also a product of profound changes, not least of all demographic, within the country. The conflict in Northern Ireland has been fought as intensely in the […]

Transition to peace leaves children of the Northern Irish Troubles more vulnerable to suicide

Northern Ireland’s suicide rate has doubled since the Good Friday Agreement. Michael Tomlinson explains that the toxic mix of greater political stability and increasing social isolation is putting those born into the Troubles at much greater risk of suicide than their British or Irish counterparts. Until recently, the most politicised public debate about suicide in Northern Ireland was around the […]

Book Review: Youth Policy, Civil Society and the Modern Irish state by Fred Powell et al.

Exploring the development of youth policy and youth work in Ireland from the mid-19th century to the present day, authors Fred Powell et al. provide a strong account of policy changes and facilities made available for young people over the last 150 years. Dr Ken Harland finds the book to be an honest account of the difficult times youth work in Ireland has […]

Book Review: A History of the Northern Ireland Labour Party: Democratic Socialism and Sectarianism by Aaron Edwards

Aaron Edwards presents a highly readable account of the Northern Ireland Labour Party. Jon Tonge believes this to be a model study of the party’s successes and lows, weaving interviews with former party members with detailed archival trawls.   A History of the Northern Ireland Labour Party: Democratic Socialism and Sectarianism. Aaron Edwards. Manchester University Press. 240 pages. February 2009. Find this book:    […]

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This work by British Politics and Policy at LSE is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported.