Nation-building and exclusion
in Racism and social change in the Republic of Ireland
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This chapter examines dominant conceptions of Irish national identity. It explores the development of exclusionary conceptions of identity homogeneity linked to nationalism and nation-building from the nineteenth century onwards with reference to the experiences of Protestant, Jewish and Traveller minority communities. The new sporting 'traditions' fostered a republicanism which equated Irishness with Catholicism. Social policy was to some extent shaped by ideological aspirations for a Gaelic-Catholic Ireland. Throughout the nineteenth century profound shifts occurred within Irish nationalism whereby one hegemonic construction of Irishness which emphasised the Irishness of the minority Protestant elite was gradually displaced by a new Catholic 'Irish-Ireland' nationalist hegemony. The relationship between nationalism and anti-Semitism in 1904 was therefore characterised by a number of elements. After the 1920s the Protestant community lost their distinct political identity within Irish politics.

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