Between the national and the civic: Flagging peace in, or a piece of, Northern Ireland?

Dominic Bryan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


On Saturday mornings I take my son up to play football at the Valley Leisure Centre in Newtownabbey, County Antrim, a large suburb at the northern end of Belfast in Northern Ireland. Outside the leisure centre is a set of six flagpoles that seem to suggest the building might be somewhat more important than it is. On one of those poles fies a Union (Jack) flag. There is of course nothing unusual about a national flag flying on a civic amenity or a public building. Travel through other parts of the United Kingdom and you might find the same sort of symbolic display. Not every local council and facility would fly the flag every day but some would (Bryan and Gillespie 2005: 82-9). Similarly, cross the border from Northern Ireland into the Republic of Ireland and you will find some civic buildings flying the Irish Tricolour every day of the year (Bryan and Gillespie 2005: 87-8). But in Northern Ireland the context is different.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFlag, Nation and Symbolism in Europe and America
EditorsThomas Hylland Erikson, Richard Jenkins
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9781134066964
ISBN (Print)0415444047, 9780415444040
Publication statusPublished - 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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