Till death do us part: Masculinity, friendship, and nationalism in Belfast, Northern Ireland

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Abstract

Inherent to the conflict in Northern Ireland has been the spatial segregation of men from women, whereby men go to prison and women are left to support and take care of their families. As a result of this segregation, a power relationship has been established that informs men's relationships both with women and with other men. While in prison, Irish men developed highly charged political friendships which reinforced the exclusion of women from the body politic. The eradication of women from the political discourses of the prison has been reincarnated years later in the spaces of Nationalist clubs. The private spaces of Long Kesh gave birth to a third space which is constructed from the traditional characteristics of both the private and the public spheres. This third space, unlike the impenetrable walls of the prison, represents and opening up of space whereby men no longer had to mirror the unrealistic image of the superhero. Instead this space represented a homeplace where these men could simply be themselves.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)53-71
Number of pages19
JournalEnvironment and Planning D: Society and Space
Volume20
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)

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