The Grassroots Pro-Asylum Seeker Movement in the Republic of Ireland: A Social Movement Perspective
Moran, Niall (2011) The Grassroots Pro-Asylum Seeker Movement in the Republic of Ireland: A Social Movement Perspective. PhD thesis, National University of Ireland Maynooth.
This thesis is an in-depth analysis of the Grassroots Pro-Asylum Seeker Movement in the Republic of Ireland between 1994 and 2004. It seeks to understand and analyse this development of the Grassroots Pro-Asylum Seeker Movement in Ireland from a social movement perspective. The movement itself contains three key phases of mobilisation: 1) Radical Anti-Racism; 2) The Multicultural Support Group and; 3) The Anti-Deportation Group. Each of these phases is described in detail in the narrative of the movement. Using the concept historicity I argue that each phase of the movement constructs a specific relationship between itself, the asylum-seeker and the Irish state. The nature and significance of each of these relationships is analysed by focussing upon the role that formal ideology plays in the construction of these relationships. This analysis is then complemented by an examination of the process of collective identity construction. I argue that this is crucial to the process of change within the movement and that there are formal and informal levels of action in the movement. Collective identity plays a key role in how the informal level of action operates. I will show that this leads to the creation of alternative systems of meaning and action that facilitate change at a group level. Lastly, I theoretically situate the final phase of mobilisation as being significantly different from the first two. I argue that this phase of the movement is indicative of a shift towards a “politics of the subject” on the behalf of the movement. I then illustrate how the movement at many points concerns itself with the larger process of desubjectivation in Irish society or how increasingly our subjective and objective worlds are growing further apart.
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