The ideology of traditional republicanism
in The IRA 1956–69
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The general view of the republican movement in Northern Ireland in the 1940s and 1950s was that it was imbued with a deeply conservative ideology. The republican view of Irish society was increasingly at odds with the new thinking among an elite that recognised the failure of the economy in the Republic and which was willing to attempt new ways of ensuring its survival and by extension their own political and social position. It is interesting to look at the extent to which republicans presented a coherent alternative to the new thinking, and to what extent it might even support the view that Sinn Féin's opposition to the new economic policy constituted a reactionary rejection of modernisation. Private enterprise was deemed to be preferable to state control, which would be confined to ‘essential industries’, but was subordinated to the overall interests of the state and its citizens. This chapter examines the ideology of traditional republicanism, Catholic social teaching as applied to Irish politics after 1922 and the impact of corporatism on republicans in the 1930s.

The IRA 1956–69

Rethinking the Republic

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