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North Ireland's "Marching Season" Culminates on July 12; Expert Available for Comment

Northern Ireland's Marching Season reaches its climax on July 12. During the 1990s, marchers determined to follow traditional routes through Catholic neighborhoods often drew angry crowds causing violence to erupt in clashes with police.

"This year," according to Elizabeth Crighton, an expert on peacemaking in Northern Ireland, "the struggle to watch is not between Catholics and Protestants but within Ulster Unionism, the province's mainline Protestant political party. Party leader David Trimble, a Nobel-prize-winning architect of Northern Ireland's peace process, has just survived another attempt to remove him from office. Now he faces possible de-selection (removal as his party's candidate) by his own constituents. What is at stake here is Unionism's support for the Belfast Agreement (1998), which frames the whole peace process. If Trimble goes, peace in Northern Ireland could go with him."

Crighton, a professor of politics at Pomona College, is an expert in the field of conflict-reduction and peace making in divided societies, and comparative ethnic politics. She is available for expert commentary on:

  • the significance of July 12 in Northern Ireland's political history,
  • the peace process (where it stands and where it's likely to go),
  • Sinn Fein and the IRA,
  • recent developments in the Ulster Unionist Party,
  • British-Irish cooperation in forwarding the peace process,
  • events to watch (e.g. attempts to depose UUP leader David Trimble, upcoming elections, appointment of a new commission to monitor the peace process, IRA's progress in disarming), and
  • lessons relevant to other conflicts around the world.

Her most recent publications include: "Shared Sovereignty as an Instrument of Peacemaking," in Reconfigured Sovereignty: Multilayered Governance in the Global Age (Thomas Ilgen, ed., forthcoming 2003/2004) and "Beyond Neoliberalism: Peacemaking in Northern Ireland," Social Justice, Vol. 25, No. 4, (Winter l998).

An articulate and engaging speaker, Professor Crighton is a four-time recipient of the Pomona College Distinguished Teaching Award, which is determined by votes of the junior and senior classes. She can be reached at her office at (909) 621-8781 or by e-mail at She can also be reached through the Pomona College Public Affairs Office at (909) 621-8515.

Pomona College, one of the nation's premier liberal arts colleges, offers a comprehensive program in the arts, humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. Founded in 1887, itshallmarks include small classes, close relationships between students and faculty, and a range of opportunities for student research.