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Non-Violent Resistance

Counter-Discourse in Irish Culture

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Edited By Agnès Maillot and Jennifer Bruen

Counter-discourses express new and alternative views of the world, in contrast with more established discourses which embody mainstream values, norms, beliefs and attitudes. The essays in this volume assess the role of counter-discourses as non-violent forms of resistance to the status quo in core domains of Irish social, cultural and political life. These domains encompass the Northern Ireland conflict and peace process; law enforcement, policing and surveillance; parliamentary debate and obstructionism; identity formation, marriage, divorce and the family; and institutional abuse, authoritarianism and the Catholic Church. The discourses are drawn from a diverse range of media including political and parliamentary speeches, ethnographic accounts, social media, short stories, song lyrics, poetry and novels, including those written for young adults. The essays highlight the power and significance of counter-discourses as vehicles of independent thought, capable of both reflecting and driving social and political change.

Agnès Maillot is Associate Professor in the School of Applied Languages and Intercultural Studies at Dublin City University. Her main area of research is the Northern Irish conflict, particularly Sinn Féin and the IRA, on which she has published widely. She is also interested in multiculturalism in France and Ireland and is currently working on issues of refugees and asylum seekers in the French and Irish contexts.

Jennifer Bruen is Associate Professor in the School of Applied Languages and Intercultural Studies at Dublin City University. Her research interests include many aspects of applied linguistics as well as political and citizenship education. She has published widely in these and related fields and is currently a member of the Royal Irish Academy Committee for Language, Literature, Culture and Communication.