Paramilitary Imprisonment in Northern Ireland: Resistance, Management, and Release

Hardcover | September 15, 2001

byKieran McEvoy

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This book offers a unique analysis of paramilitary imprisonment in Northern Ireland. The central focus of the book is the struggle between inmates and the state concerning the prisoners' assertion of their status as political prisoners. Drawing upon interviews with former Republican andLoyalist prisoners as well as prison managers and staff, this book locates that experience within the broader theoretical literature on imprisonment. Four forms of prison resistance are examined by which prisoners asserted their political status. Dirty protest and hunger strike are characterised asresistance through self sacrifice. Violence, destruction and intimidation are examined as prison resistance becoming an extension of armed struggle. Escape is analysed as a form of resistance through ridicule. And finally law is considered as instrumental resistance and a dialogical process with arange of audiences. The book then considers a range of prison management adopted by the prison authorities. `Reactive Containment' is described as a military-led model of management which incapacitated the terrorist `enemy' but acknowledged the political character of the inmates. `Criminalization' is viewed as astrategy designed to deny any practical or symbolic acceptance of the political motivation of prisoners. `Managerialism', it is argued, encompasses a series of scientific discourses to rationalise conflicting interactions with prisoners, from pragmatic accommodations to a dogged determination toprevent further recognition of de facto political status. The book concludes with an analysis of the early release of paramilitary prisoners and the conflict resolution process and some reflections on political prisons as spaces both during and after a political conflict.

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This book offers a unique analysis of paramilitary imprisonment in Northern Ireland. The central focus of the book is the struggle between inmates and the state concerning the prisoners' assertion of their status as political prisoners. Drawing upon interviews with former Republican andLoyalist prisoners as well as prison managers and ...

Kieran McEvoy is a Reader in law at The Queen's University, Belfast

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:440 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 1.14 inPublished:September 15, 2001Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198299079

ISBN - 13:9780198299073

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Table of Contents

Background and Definitions1. IntroductionI. Prisoner Resistance2. Coping, Resistance, and Political Imprisonment3. Escape: Resistance as Ridicule4. Hunger Strike and Dirty Protest: Resistance as Self-Sacrifice5. Resistance and Violence: Power, Intimidation and the Control of Space6. Resistance and Law: Prisons, and the Poltical StruggleII. Prison Management7. Prison Management and Prison Staff8. Reactive Containment 1969-19759. Criminalization 1976-198110. Managerialism 1981-2000III. The Early Release of Prisoners11. Prisoner Release, the Peace process, and the Political Character of the ConflictEpilogue Political Prisons and the Construction of MemoryAppendix 1. Key Prison EventsAppendix 2. Notes on the Research Process

Editorial Reviews

`This in an outstanding... contribution to the prisons literature. It serves as an important piece of history, but more important, as a fully sociological and original analysis of strategies of coping, management, control and resistance.'Alison Leibling, British Journal of Criminology, Vol. 42/3,