Out of the Ashes: An Oral History of the Provisional Irish Republican Movement

Merrion Press

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Product Overview

Irish Republican

Out of the Ashes is the definitive history of the Provisional Irish Republican movement, from its formation at the outset of the modern Troubles up to and after its official disarmament in 2005. Robert White, a prolific observer of IRA and Sinn Féin activities, has amassed an incomparable body of interview material from leading members over a thirty-year period. In this defining study, the interviewees provide extraordinary insights into the complex motivations that provoked their support for armed struggle, their eventual reform, and the mind-set of today’s ‘dissidents’ who refuse to lay down their arms.

Those interviewed stem from every stage of the Provisionals’ history, from founding figures such as Seán Mac Stiofáin, Ruairí Ó Brádaigh and Joe Cahill to the new generation that replaced them: Martin McGuinness, Danny Morrison, and Brendan Hughes among others. Out of the Ashes is a pioneering history that breaks new ground in defining how the Provisionals operated, caused worldwide condemnation, and were transformed by constitutional politics.


Table of Contents

Part I: An Oral History of Provisional Irish Republicans

Resistance (1170-1923)
Keeping the Faith (1923-1962)
Civil Rights and Politics (1962-1969)
The Split, I (August 1969-January 1970)
War (January 1970-December 1971)
1972: The Year of Victory
The Provisionals Adapt (1973-19740
A Deadly Truce (1975)
The Long War Strategy (1976-1978)
Stalemate (1978-1980)
Hunger Strikes (1980-1981)
The Armalite and the Ballot Box (1982-1983)
Adams Takes Command (1983-1985)
The Split, II (1986)
The Plan Fails (1987-1990)
Ceasefire (1990-1994)
Another Ceasefire (August 1994-July 1997)
The Split, III — and the Good Friday Agreement (1997-1998)
Winning the Peace (1998-2005)

Part II: Revolution Over the Life Course, and Life Over the Course of the Revolution

Who Stays, and When they Leave Where do They Go?
Who won the war? Reflections on Activism and Armed Struggle

Part III: The War is Over: The Irish Republican Movement Continues: Activism Since 2005

Sinn Féin: The War is Over, the Struggle Continues (2005-2014)
The War Continues: Anti-GFA Irish Republicans (2005-2014)

Part IV: Conclusions

Understanding the Provisionals: A Sociological Summary
Appendix I: Methods
Appendix II: Roll of Honour ~ Provisional IRA and Sinn Féin Activists Killed, 1969-1998

About the Author

Robert W. White is Professor and Chair of the Department of Sociology at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). He is the author of Ruairí Ó Brádaigh: The Life and Politics of an Irish Revolutionary (2006), Provisional Irish Republicans: An Oral and Interpretive History (1993), and co-editor of Self, Identity, and Social Movements (2000).  He also produced the online (open access) documentary, Unfinished Business: The Politics of ‘Dissident’ Irish Republicans (2012), http://www.ulib.iupui.edu/utility/video/unfinishedbusiness.html


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