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Religious Motivation During the Troubles

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The question of the extent of religious motivation for the Troubles (1969-1998) has existed for as long as the conflict itself. Many participants as well as external commentators have offered various opinions. This piece attempts to contribute to this debate by introducing previously unused theories to explain the situation, namely military cohesion. This article also argues that attempts to understand the conflict through any single viewpoint, be it religious, political, or ethnic, is futile. Instead these three viewpoints need to be combined in order to fully understand the conflict. This article argues that a combination of ethnic mobilisation, territory sacralisation, and republican martyrdom provide a means through which a political conflict between two religiously defined ethnicities can be understood in relation to present day conflicts.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: May 1, 2016

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  • The St Antony's International Review (STAIR) is the only peer-reviewed journal of international affairs at the University of Oxford. Set up by graduate students of St Antony's College in 2005, the Review has carved out a distinctive niche as a cross-disciplinary outlet for research on the most pressing contemporary global issues, providing a forum in which emerging scholars can publish their work alongside established academics and policymakers. Past contributors include Robert O. Keohane, James N. Rosenau, and Alfred Stepan.
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