Contemporary southern unionism

Published in Issue 3 (May/June 2016), Letters, Volume 24

Sir,—I am an International Peace Studies student at Trinity College Dublin, researching contemporary southern unionism. My research to date suggests that unionism is not extinct but has evolved over the past century into (a) ‘cultural unionism’, those who believe that there is a social union between the peoples of the British Isles, are somewhat fond of British culture and/or have British, or Northern Irish, heritage; (b) ‘partitionism’, those who believe that Northern Ireland should remain a separate state from the Republic; (c) ‘neo-unionism’, those who believe that their particular region, or the entire Republic, should rejoin the UK in a political union. I have decided to carry out a survey of people, aged 18+, residing in the Republic, to get their views on certain political and cultural issues, including their sense of identity. If any History Ireland readers would like to take part in the survey they can log on to This is open to everyone, not just those who may be potentially unionist, with all respondents remaining anonymous. Unionism had a strong presence across Ireland in the early twentieth century, and it would be interesting to hear the views of their descendants a century later.—Yours etc.,

Trinity College, Dublin


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