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Irish Studies Seminar - Rachael Young, 'Criminalization and community murals in Brixton and Belfast'

Rachael Young (Boston College): ‘Less violent, but no less visible: criminalization and community murals in Brixton and Belfast, 1980-89’

May 7, 2024
Institute of Irish Studies, 27 Unversity Square, 01/003
16:30 - 18:00

This seminar examines how both the Black community of Brixton and the republican community of Belfast used community murals as an activist tool to counter the state-sponsored narratives of criminalization throughout the 1980s. The government of the United Kingdom weaponized the narrative of criminalization to demonize minority communities and decry their lawlessness, but these groups used public art to assert their counter-narrative, arguing instead that civil rights violations and heavy-handed policing were the cause of disorder and violence. This work explores the solidarity between these two groups, pushing back against the historiographical separation of these disadvantaged minority communities. 

Dr Rachael Young is a Postdoctoral Fellow and Program Coordinator in Irish Studies at Boston College. She completed her PhD in 2023 at BC on the topic ‘“Art and Argument Go Hand in Hand:” Community Murals as Activism in England and Northern Ireland, 1980-1989’. She is the QUB-BC Visiting Fellow in Irish Studies for 2024.

This event will be both in-person in the Irish Studies Seminar Room, 27 University Square, and online via MS Teams. All welcome in-person or online 

Please note change of date to 7 May.

Institute of Irish Studies
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Event Organiser Details
Name Peter Gray
Phone ext 5226