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    Digging Underneath the Reconciliation Paradigm in Northern Ireland: Survival, Temporal Resistance, Rebellious Mourning

    Robinson, Joseph S. (2022) Digging Underneath the Reconciliation Paradigm in Northern Ireland: Survival, Temporal Resistance, Rebellious Mourning. PhD thesis, National University of Ireland Maynooth.

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    This dissertation argues that the political and spatial control over time and temporality is a deeply under-studied aspect of transitional societies. Specifically, I examine the temporal assumptions and temporal demands of the “reconciliation paradigm” in Northern Ireland. In transitional societies supposedly emerging from war and interethnic conflict, dominant manifestations of political power seek to bracket, periodicise, or temporally discontinue the violent past from an allegedly reconciling present and the promise of a liberal democratic future. Justice-seeking victims, survivors, and bereaved of political violence, in these contexts, are widely presented as anachronisms, people out-of-step with the direction an allegedly reconciling society is going. In contrast to the impulses of the mainstream Transitional Justice, Trauma Studies, and Peace Studies, throughout this dissertation I argue that violent pasts are always in a state of “diabolical continuity” with an unjust present. I consider the reconciliation paradigm to be largely a mechanism of insulating the postconflict order from meaningful criticism and depoliticising survivors’ demands for justice. In this study, I examine the temporal and spatial practices of victims, survivors, and bereaved people in Northern Ireland, arguing that they are engaging in forms of “temporal resistance” that seek to prolong the past in the face of ubiquitous social and political pressure to “move on from” or “close the books on” Northern Ireland’s troubled past. But where this study departs from other excellent work critical of temporal power-formations in postconflict space is in its emphasis on geographical place as the crucial engine of temporal resistance. Specifically, I argue that temporal resistance is inseparable from the chronotopic, threshold places where the past can be re-emplotted in the present, places that still seethe and meddle with the lived realities and everyday mobilities of Northern Irish inhabitants.

    Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
    Keywords: Reconciliation Paradigm; Northern Ireland; Survival; Temporal Resistance; Rebellious Mourning;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Geography
    Item ID: 16916
    Depositing User: IR eTheses
    Date Deposited: 07 Feb 2023 11:02
      Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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