The Curious Case of Cú Chulainn: Nationalism, Culture, and Meaning Making in the Contested Symbols of Northern Ireland
No jmkwx, SocArXiv from Center for Open Science
While scholars have long recognized the importance of symbols to nationalism, most analyses examine relatively unambiguous symbols. I seek to understand how such processes function when symbolic meaning is contested, analyzing how organizations on both sides of the conflict in Northern Ireland deployed representations of Cú Chulainn to support conflicting political programs. I argue that movements in Northern Ireland imbued symbols with meaning by emplotting them within ideological narratives. In return, these symbols provided evidence that strengthened and supported the ideological narratives of the movements that produced them, serving as potent reminders of the worldview such narratives advocate.
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