From Peace Process to 'Surrender' Process: The Existential Anxiety of the Protestant Loyalist Community in Northern Ireland

By Alan Grattan.

Published by The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences: Annual Review

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Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: January 19, 2015 $US5.00

The return to protest and street violence from within the Protestant Loyalist community emanates from the perceived erosion of their identity and sense of security in a changing Northern Ireland. For them, the certainties of the past have given way to uncertainties of the future in the period since the advent of the 'Peace Process' in 1998. Feelings of betrayal by their political leaders have led to a mass existential anxiety as to their place and identity in the 'new' Northern Ireland. Reverting to the tried and tested way of 'banding' as a 'community of feelings' to resist any further loss of identity and sense of belonging, this community once again has taken to mass protest and indeed street violence to stave of 'surrender' brought about by a sense of political alienation. This paper will explore the process since 1998 to the present; from Peace Process to 'surrender' process and the return.

Keywords: Community Conflict and Violence, Loyalist Community, Existential Anxiety, Identity, Community of Feelings, Northern Ireland Peace Process

The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences: Annual Review, Volume 8, pp.23-31. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: January 19, 2015 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 568.604KB)).

Dr. Alan Grattan

Senior Lecturer and Director of Criminology, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Winchester, Winchester, Hampshire, UK