The contemporary crisis in the maintenance of civil order on both sides of the Irish border has initiated unique developments in the "system" of criminal justice within Ireland. The government of the Republic and the administration of the Province have responded to various attacks on their legitimacy by relying on the controls of the criminal sanction, while radically altering the process through which that sanction is applied and accorded its full effect. While denying the political nature of the conflict, these governments have cloaked extraordinary social control measures in the authority of the rule of law. They would have us believe that by relying on the controls of criminal law rather than military force alone, violent challenges to their existence are not attacks on the substance of the state. But how they have fundamentally altered the face of the criminal sanction to propagate this myth of normality! And with each particular innovation, the broader workings of criminal law in Ireland are certainly (and perhaps insidiously) taking on a new significance for the state control function.
Law, Society and Governance
"Criminalisation" and the Detention of "Political Prisoners": An Irish Solution. (1985). Contemporary Crises. 9, (1), 1-17. Research Collection School Of Law.
Available at: http://ink.library.smu.edu.sg/sol_research/2060
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