Sarah Campbell: Anglo-Irish Relations: from partition to Brexit
“Indeed, so much of this visit reminds us of the complexity of our history, its many layers and traditions, but also the importance of forbearance and conciliation. Of being able to bow to the past, but not be bound by it”.
On 18 May 2011, Queen Elizabeth II heralded a new era in Anglo-Irish relations in a speech that was branded a ‘game-changer’ in the relationship between the two islands. This talk will examine this relationship, which can be described as being ‘close but tortuous’. It is a relationship that has been marked by insurrection, war and strained diplomacy despite geographical proximity and many cultural and familial ties. This talk will focus on some of the key moments and events over the last century that have defined and shaped the relationship, and explore the extent to which Northern Ireland, and the legacies of the conflict, have the potential to cause dangerous diplomatic rifts in Anglo-Irish relations.
Dr Sarah Campbell is a lecturer in modern Irish and British History at Newcastle University.