The Northern Ireland Peace Process
Choreography and Theatrical Politics
By Paul Dixon
Routledge – 2006 – 240 pages
This innovative volume presents a new framework that captures the complex and contradictory politics of peacemaking in Northern Ireland.
Engaging with key debates between nationalists and unionists, and consociationalists and civil society advocates of conflict resolution, this book uses a theatrical metaphor to illuminate the constraints and opportunities facing key political actors in their attempt to bridge the gap between nationalists and unionists to sign and then attempt to sustain the Good Friday Agreement. This new study also examines the range of political skills deployed by politicians involved in the Northern Ireland, South African and Middle East peace processes in their attempts to manipulate the public, front stage presentation of the peace process and maximize the support of diverse audiences for it.
The Northern Ireland Peace Process will be of particular interest to students and researchers in the fields of politics, Irish studies, conflict studies and political communication.
1. Curtain Raiser Part 1: Theatrical Politics and Conflict Resolution 2. Consociationalism 3. Civil Society 4. Politics as Theatre Part 2: The Script: Continuity, Change and the Peace Process 5. Dress Rehearsal? The First Peace Process (1972-74) and Second Peace Process (1994-) Compared 6. The International Stage and the Pan-Nationalist Script Part 3: Rewriting the Scripts? 7. Changing Scripts: The 'New' Politics of Northern Ireland 8. Going Back Stage: Journalism and the Peace Process