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The Shankill versus Franco: Working-class Protestants’ fight against Spanish fascism

DOWNES StevieThe Shankill versus Franco: Working-class Protestants’ fight against Spanish fascism
by Stevie DOWNES for Northern Ireland Foundation
1 February 2014

On Saturday 1st February, a plaque was unveiled in the Shankill Library to seven men from the area who went to fight against Franco in the 1936 Spanish Civil War. Of the seven, four died out there, yet it has taken 75 years for any formal recognition. This is a testament to how long it can take to come to terms with history. And we still haven’t, which is why history is still politics here.

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Beyond the Zero Sum Game: Getting out of Protestant alienation roundabout

20130320 Beyond Zero Sum - Ashton Community Trust

DOWNES StevieBeyond the Zero Sum Game: Getting out of Protestant alienation roundabout
By Stevie DOWNES for Northern Ireland Foundation
20 March 2013

I have reason to be grateful to the Ashton Community Trust for a number of reasons. The main reason is for organising the North Belfast Respect Programme that ran during the month of March. The other reason is that I got to attend a discussion on social deprivation in working class communities in North Belfast. Held in Belfast Castle looking down on the Titanic Quarter, we listened to Tim Cunningham, Professor Peter Shirlow, Mark Langhammer and Goretti Horgan give their interpretations on the topic, “Beyond the Zero Sum Game: The Truth about Deprivation in Working Class Communities”.