Troubling Pasts: Teaching Public History in Northern Ireland

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This article explores the challenges and opportunities presented for the teaching and practice of public history in a post-conflict society that remains deeply divided over its past. It examines some of the negative ways in which history is used in the public arena, but also the potential of public history initiatives for building a more cohesive and forward-looking society. It examines how students can use the rich cultural landscape of Northern Ireland and engage with a wide range of experienced practitioners to learn more about the ways in which history divides; how we can negotiate these divisions over interpretations; how different communities understand, represent, and engage with their past; and why this matters.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)67-75
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Public History
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jul 2021


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