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      ‘We Shall Overcome’? The Good Friday/Belfast Agreement and the Memory of the Civil Rights Movement

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      Open Library of Humanities

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          Abstract

          While 2018 marks the twentieth anniversary of the signing of the Good Friday Agreement (GFA) in Northern Ireland, it also marks the fiftieth anniversary of the civil rights movement and the protests of 1968. One of the key innovations of the Agreement is that it makes issues of rights central to the broader consociational framework, with the entirety of section 6 devoted to ‘Rights, Safeguards and Equality of opportunity.’ This reinforces a perception that the GFA is a culmination of the civil rights movement and its aims; and that the conflict itself was based on issues of rights. The civil rights movement continues to be an enduring collective memory for the nationalist community in post-Agreement Northern Ireland, but since 1998 it has become a site of contested memory. This article considers the civil rights movement’s reputational trajectory since 1998, questioning why this is so, and why it is so ripe for appropriation. It will also examine how different memories of the movement have been mobilized to serve various and sometimes competing agendas. In doing so, it will explore the cultural and political power the memory of ‘rights’ had in the Agreement and in the two decades since.

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          Between Memory and History: Les Lieux de Memoire

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            The Long Civil Rights Movement and the Political Uses of the Past

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              WHAT IS ETHNIC IDENTITY AND DOES IT MATTER?

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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                2056-6700
                Open Library of Humanities
                Open Library of Humanities
                2056-6700
                24 April 2018
                2018
                : 4
                : 1
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Newcastle University, GB
                Article
                10.16995/olh.259
                b655a912-c695-4268-8b8b-6a3b8e79d7d1
                Copyright: © 2018 The Author(s)

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC-BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. See http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

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                Self URI (journal-page): https://olh.openlibhums.org/
                Categories
                #Agreement20

                Literary studies,Religious studies & Theology,Arts,Social & Behavioral Sciences,History,Philosophy

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