Northern Ireland's Lost Opportunity The Frustrated Promise of Political Loyalism

Format: Hardcover
Pub. Date: 2013-01-22
Publisher(s): PLUTO PRESS
List Price: $115.00

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Lost Opportunity is the first in-depth investigation of how working-class Loyalism, as represented by the Ulster Volunteer Force, the Red Hand Commando, and their political allies, developed a political analysis of the Northern Ireland conflict in the 1970s, and how that led them to argue for a compromise peace involving all political parties and all warring factions -- a role that until now historians and writers have largely ignored. Consequently, this work will be the first in-depth study that focuses not on the violent actions of the UVF/RHC, but rather on their political vision and their program for a viable and compromise peace in Northern Ireland: a vision that included talking and compromising with all shades of opinion, including the Irish Republican Army.

Author Biography

Tony Novosel lectures in History at the University of Pittsburgh. He is involved in "common history" projects in Belfast.

Table of Contents

"A significant contribution. Novosel exposes the limitation of commonly held views that loyalism was apolitical and merely sectarian. The book's significance also lies in the depth of its scholarship. Hopefully it will remind those studying Northern Ireland that loyalists played and continue to play a significant role in peace-building. This warts-and-all account is a vital read." – Professor Peter Shirlow, School of Law, Queen's University Belfast

"Novosel's study of the UVF and its attempts to develop a politicized loyalism challenges the standard one-dimensional representation of loyalism that so dominates the media and popular imagination. A well-researched history based on extensive contacts with key players, this is a welcome addition to the emerging body of work on loyalism. A necessary, serious and informative read." – Graham Spencer is Reader in Politics, Conflict and the Media at the University of Portsmouth, UK and author of The State of Loyalism in Northern Ireland

"This thoroughly researched book is integral to an understanding of the Conflict Transformation Process which has made Northern Ireland a beacon of hope, and adds a vital component to the complex narrative of our recent history." – John Kyle, Belfast City Councilor

"Novosel effectively challenges common perceptions. He demonstrates that some Loyalists offered hope when hope was most needed but faced constant obstruction by those challenged by their 'new thinking'." – Roy Garland, Irish News

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