Digital Contention In A Divided Society

Day 9 of the 10-day Conflict Memory & Education programme involves a book launch conversation with Dr. Paul Reilly between 13:00-14:00.

His new book is fresh off the Manchester University Press and you can register to join us on the webinar – click here

Digital Contention can be purchased in hardback and eBook here

A description of the event can be found below:

Join Paul Reilly (University of Sheffield) and host, John Coster (Doc Media Centre), to celebrate the launch of Paul’s new book, Digital contention in a divided society: Social media, parades and protests in Northern Ireland. ‘Much that is written about the politics of Northern Ireland is based on highly selective accounts of the available evidence. Reilly eschews this approach, subjecting the political use of social media to sustained critique in this empirically rich study. In so doing, he makes a very valuable contribution to scholarship.’ Phil Ramsey, Lecturer in the School of Communication and Media, Ulster University About the book: How are platforms such as Facebook and Twitter used by citizens to frame contentious parades and protests in ‘post-conflict’ Northern Ireland? What do these contentious episodes tell us about the potential of information and communication technologies to promote positive intergroup contact in the deeply divided society? These issues are addressed in what is the first in-depth qualitative exploration of how social media were used during the union flag protests (December 2012-March 2013) and the Ardoyne parade disputes (July 2014 and 2015). The book focuses on the extent to which affective publics, mobilised and connected via expressions of solidarity on social media, appear to escalate or de-escalate sectarian tensions caused by these hybrid media events. It also explores whether citizen activity on these online platforms has the potential to contribute to peacebuilding in Northern Ireland.

I’ve been lucky to host several conversation’s with Paul over the years including our Sousveillance Newsroom in 2020 at the Documentary Media Centre click here

Paul has another interesting project involving the social media platform, Instagram. It’s called Memorializing the Northern Irish Troubles on Instagram.

‘Memory can often polarise communities in deeply-divided societies transitioning out of sectarian conflict. ‘

Search #thetroubles on instagram.





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