How new is new loyalism?

McGlynn, C 2004, How new is new loyalism? , PhD thesis, Salford : University of Salford.

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This thesis provides an analysis of the manifestos of two political parties in Northern Ireland. These parties are the Progressive Unionist Party (PUP) and the Ulster Democratic Party (UDP), which is now defunct. These parties came to prominence during the peace process that led to the signing of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998 and both were termed new loyalist. The phrase new loyalism suggests a novel alternative to the pessimistic and exclusivist ethos of traditional loyalist expression as exemplified by lan Paisley's Democratic Unionist Party (DUP). However, a brief survey of the history of labourism in the North-East of Ireland reveals that there have been previous attempts to form a political party with a social democratic manifesto, an agenda that could supplant sectarianism as the main organising principle of Protestant working class politics. Some of these movements have emerged from within the same loyalist paramilitary groupings who were responsible for the formation of the new loyalist parties. The purpose of the research on which this thesis was based was to ascertain if the PUP and the UDP represented a genuinely new and different political direction in loyalism, which could outlast uncertainty over constitutional matters. A framework to test the parties was constructed from two separate literature reviews. The first was a review of literature defining unionism, loyalism and new loyalism. The second considered the academic debate on reconciling differentiated citizenship rights within a polity. Data was then collected on the development and manifestos of the two parties and qualitative interviews were conducted with fifteen members of the PUP. The thesis concludes that the parties were both affected by a number of external factors, in particular the growing disaffection of unionists with the Agreement. However, it must also be concluded that neither party developed an agenda that transcended sectarianism.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Contributors: Tonge, J (Supervisor)
Schools: Schools > School of Humanities, Languages & Social Sciences > Centre for European Security
Schools > School of Humanities, Languages & Social Sciences
Depositing User: Institutional Repository
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2012 13:34
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 23:01

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