Music, youth, and peacebuilding in Northern Ireland

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Pruitt, Lesley (2011) Music, youth, and peacebuilding in Northern Ireland. Global Change, Peace and Security, 23 (2). pp. 207-222. ISSN 1478-1158 (print), 1478-1166 (online)


This article presents a preliminary analysis from a case study conducted in Northern Ireland. Participant observation and semi-structured interviewing were used to learn whether music might serve as a useful tool for engaging Northern Irish youth in peacebuilding. Obstacles and limitations certainly exist, but the data suggests that music can be used to engage youth in peacebuilding in three key ways: (1) music can be useful in bringing youth together to share meaning, and as such is an alternative way to engage in dialogue for building peace; (2) music-making can help youth gain self-esteem and reconsider their view of others in a way that can help to destabilize conflict identities; and (3) by taking part in musical programs, violence by, against, and between youth may be reduced or prevented by changing the way youth experience the spaces they inhabit and/or by providing alternative activities to rioting.

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Item type Article
DOI 10.1080/14781158.2011.580961
Official URL
Subjects Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Social Sciences and Psychology
Historical > FOR Classification > 1606 Political Science
Historical > SEO Classification > 9403 International Relations
Keywords ResPubID24122, youth, peacebuilding, Northern Ireland, dialogue, identity, space
Citations in Scopus 20 - View on Scopus
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