I’m giving a Public talk at 4pm Fri 27 Oct in the Black Gate Cultural Centre, Francis St Galway as part of the first ever Galway Cartoon Festival on ‘Laughter in a time of violence: cartoonists and the Northern Ireland conflict’. Some details below.
Cartoonists took all sides and none during the thirty year conflict over the political status of Northern Ireland that broke out in 1969 and in which more then 3,600 people were killed. This talk analyses some of the most striking and insightful cartoons that emerged from the conflict, drawing out the recurring themes and arguments that cartoonists sought to advance through strong and sometimes shocking imagery. Cartoonists viewed the conflict from very different political perspectives and sought to advance conflicting arguments. The talk considers the extent to which cartoonists reinforced and validated enmities and hostile caricatures or sought to challenge them. It pays special attention to those cartoonists who sought to unsettle mainstream assumptions and question the rhetoric of dominant forces. It concludes by looking at contemporary portrayals of the violent past and the continuing arguments over how to deal with the legacy of conflict.
Niall Ó Dochartaigh is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Political Science and Sociology at the National University of Ireland Galway. He has published extensively on the Northern Ireland conflict and on mediation, peace negotiations and territoriality. Recent publications include the co-edited books Political Violence in Context (ECPR Press 2015) and Dynamics of Political Change in Ireland: Making and Breaking a Divided Island (Routledge 2017). He is currently completing a monograph on the negotiating relationship between the British state and the IRA during the Northern Ireland conflict. He is a founding convener of the Standing Group on Political Violence of the European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR) and the Specialist Group on Peace and Conflict of the Political Studies Association of Ireland (PSAI). Further information at niallodoc.wordpress.com.