Download e-book for kindle: Beyond the Wire: Former Prisoners and Conflict by Peter Shirlow

By Peter Shirlow

ISBN-10: 0745326323

ISBN-13: 9780745326320

This publication presents the 1st certain exam of the function performed by means of former loyalist and republican prisoners in grass roots clash transformation paintings within the Northern eire peace procedure. It demanding situations the assumed passivity of former prisoners and ex-combatants. as a substitute, it means that such members and the teams which they shaped were key brokers of clash transformation. they've got supplied management in tough cultures of violence, constructed functional tools of resolving inter-communal clash and located methods for groups to discover their bothered previous. In analysing this, the authors problem the sterile demonisation of former prisoners and the tactics that keep their exclusion from general civic and social lifestyles. The publication is a optimistic reminder of the necessity for complete participation of either former fighters and sufferers in post-conflict transformation. It additionally lays out a brand new time table for reconciliation which implies that clash transformation can and may commence ‘from the extremes’. The e-book can be of curiosity to scholars of criminology, peace and clash experiences, legislations and politics, geography and sociology in addition to people with a selected curiosity within the Northern eire clash.

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Additional resources for Beyond the Wire: Former Prisoners and Conflict Transformation in Northern Ireland

Example text

It is not political, it is a crime’ (O’Malley, 1990: 60). Bobby Sands died on 5 May 1981, on the 66th day of his hunger strike. His funeral was attended by over 100,000 people and his death produced a massive (and largely negative) international reaction to perceived British intransigence (Taylor, 1997, 1980). Despite a range of efforts by mediators (Collins, 1986), and direct channels of communication to the British government through the Foreign Office, ten hunger strikers were to die before this second hunger strike was called off in October 1981.

Denying their status as political and presenting Shirlow 01 intro 28 12/11/07 14:44:13 Understanding Political Imprisonment 29 them as criminal actors is, by extension, to deny the broader political character of the struggle in which they are engaged. Implementing a criminalisation policy in the prisons requires a contingent and partial attitude to law and legality. On the one hand, rigid rule enforcement is adopted as a means to harass and repress prisoners. On the other, law offers only a very limited check on the behaviour of staff towards inmates – the need to ‘break’ the prisoners’ morale and, at times, physical or mental capacity has primacy.

Prisoner collectives may vary from an unwritten code of honour, to an intricate subculture, to a full formal military or paramilitary command structure (Buntman, 2003; Kaminski, 2004). For political prisoners, the organisation’s ideology will unsurprisingly shape the collective. Thus, for example, both the African National Congress (ANC) in South Africa and the Republican prisoners in Northern Ireland placed considerable emphasis on the ‘communal’ nature of their imprisonment, putting into practice their broadly socialist leanings by, for example, pooling resources (McKeown, 2001; Buntman, 2003).

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Beyond the Wire: Former Prisoners and Conflict Transformation in Northern Ireland by Peter Shirlow

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