Pragmatists versus dogmatists: Explaining the failure of power-sharing in Northern Ireland during the 1970s

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This article argues that the failure of Northern Ireland's first power-sharing executive, and subsequent attempts to restore power-sharing during the 1970s, was the result of conflicting attitudes towards devolution among Northern Ireland's politicians. Traditional ideological divisions between nationalists and unionists were not the primary barrier to creating and sustaining cross-community institutions, as stressed in accounts of this period premised on consociational theory. Drawing extensively from archival sources, it argues that the split between the pragmatists from both communities, who were prepared to compromise their core principles and accept power-sharing devolution within a UK framework, and the dogmatists (both nationalists and unionists) who refused to contemplate any compromise to their core position, prevented a consensual political settlement emerging during the 1970s.

LanguageEnglish
Pages49-71
Number of pages23
JournalBritish Politics
Volume11
Issue number1
Early online date17 Nov 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016

Fingerprint

compromise
decentralization
community
politician
Northern Ireland
Pragmatist
1970s
Nationalists
Compromise
Devolution
Unionists
Politicians
Split

Cite this

@article{34a6619932ea4ce9bb25a5a10c442b97,
title = "Pragmatists versus dogmatists: Explaining the failure of power-sharing in Northern Ireland during the 1970s",
abstract = "This article argues that the failure of Northern Ireland's first power-sharing executive, and subsequent attempts to restore power-sharing during the 1970s, was the result of conflicting attitudes towards devolution among Northern Ireland's politicians. Traditional ideological divisions between nationalists and unionists were not the primary barrier to creating and sustaining cross-community institutions, as stressed in accounts of this period premised on consociational theory. Drawing extensively from archival sources, it argues that the split between the pragmatists from both communities, who were prepared to compromise their core principles and accept power-sharing devolution within a UK framework, and the dogmatists (both nationalists and unionists) who refused to contemplate any compromise to their core position, prevented a consensual political settlement emerging during the 1970s.",
keywords = "Consociationalism, Devolution, Northern Ireland, Power-sharing",
author = "Shaun McDaid",
year = "2016",
month = "4",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1057/bp.2014.18",
language = "English",
volume = "11",
pages = "49--71",
journal = "British Politics",
issn = "1746-918X",
publisher = "Palgrave Macmillan Ltd.",
number = "1",

}

Pragmatists versus dogmatists : Explaining the failure of power-sharing in Northern Ireland during the 1970s. / McDaid, Shaun.

In: British Politics, Vol. 11, No. 1, 01.04.2016, p. 49-71.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Pragmatists versus dogmatists

T2 - British Politics

AU - McDaid, Shaun

PY - 2016/4/1

Y1 - 2016/4/1

N2 - This article argues that the failure of Northern Ireland's first power-sharing executive, and subsequent attempts to restore power-sharing during the 1970s, was the result of conflicting attitudes towards devolution among Northern Ireland's politicians. Traditional ideological divisions between nationalists and unionists were not the primary barrier to creating and sustaining cross-community institutions, as stressed in accounts of this period premised on consociational theory. Drawing extensively from archival sources, it argues that the split between the pragmatists from both communities, who were prepared to compromise their core principles and accept power-sharing devolution within a UK framework, and the dogmatists (both nationalists and unionists) who refused to contemplate any compromise to their core position, prevented a consensual political settlement emerging during the 1970s.

AB - This article argues that the failure of Northern Ireland's first power-sharing executive, and subsequent attempts to restore power-sharing during the 1970s, was the result of conflicting attitudes towards devolution among Northern Ireland's politicians. Traditional ideological divisions between nationalists and unionists were not the primary barrier to creating and sustaining cross-community institutions, as stressed in accounts of this period premised on consociational theory. Drawing extensively from archival sources, it argues that the split between the pragmatists from both communities, who were prepared to compromise their core principles and accept power-sharing devolution within a UK framework, and the dogmatists (both nationalists and unionists) who refused to contemplate any compromise to their core position, prevented a consensual political settlement emerging during the 1970s.

KW - Consociationalism

KW - Devolution

KW - Northern Ireland

KW - Power-sharing

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84959135699&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/id/eprint/22742/

U2 - 10.1057/bp.2014.18

DO - 10.1057/bp.2014.18

M3 - Article

VL - 11

SP - 49

EP - 71

JO - British Politics

JF - British Politics

SN - 1746-918X

IS - 1

ER -