Fraternity and hate
in The religion of Orange politics
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This chapter takes as its ethnographic focus the Glencruix Orange Social Club, a private bar for Orangemen which provides a key space for fraternal sociability and bonding. By describing the lives and conversations of Orangemen here, this chapter argues that any anthropology of ‘The Good’ needs to rethink what might be legitimately included within this category; failure to do so will lead to a fundamental failure to understand the moral claims which Orangemen themselves make. This argument hinges on a partial conflation of fraternal love and sectarian hate, a conflation which is designed to show how loving fellow Orangemen and hating (largely imagined and absent) Catholics are interdependent social processes. Drawing on the philosophical work of Burke on ‘the negative’, the chapter suggests that a love for the fraternity necessitates a relational rejection, just as sectarian hate necessitates a relational embrace. A key element of the attendant ethnographic context here is the football rivalry between Celtic FC and Rangers FC which stands as Scotland’s most infamous occasion for performances of sectarian hate. The conclusion of the chapter, that hate can be part of ‘The Good’, begins to set up the book’s overall Conclusion about the morality of exceptionalism.

The religion of Orange politics

Protestantism and fraternity in contemporary Scotland


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