The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) has moved from a religion-dominated protest party to a pragmatic party of government in Northern Ireland, the most popular in the region, with more votes, Assembly seats, and MPs than any of its rivals. This book draws upon the first-ever survey of the party's members, funded by the Leverhulme Trust, along with over one hundred interviews, to analyse their views on the transformation undergone by the DUP. The book analyses what
categories of individual make up the DUP, ranging from religious fundamentalists or moderates, detailing the religious composition of the party. How Free Presbyterian or Orange is the modern DUP and how is its membership changing? What identity do those members hold?
The book then assesses the attitudes of members to the contemporary power-sharing arrangements in a divided society. How comfortable is the DUP to sharing political spoils with the republican 'enemy'? How supportive are members of the Executive and Assembly in Northern Ireland and what progress do they think has been made? The book also dissects the modern fears of DUP members, ranging from the dilution of religious fervour to continuing fears over security and opposition to policing reforms.
Attitudes to unity with other Unionist groups are explored, as are the prospects of capturing support from Catholic supporters of Northern Ireland's place in the United Kingdom.
Drawing upon unprecedented access to a party traditionally suspicious of outsiders, this book offers a unique insight into how an opposition party grounded in religious principles has accommodated change and broadened its appeal, whilst retaining most of its traditional hardcore membership.
Jonathan Tonge has produced fifteen books and over fifty chapters and journal articles on British and Irish politics and worked on five ESRC and two Leverhulme Trust programmes in the last decade. Recent books include Comparative Peace Processes (Polity 2014) Loyal to the Core: Orangeism and Britishness in Northern Ireland (Irish Academic Press 2011); Politics in Ireland (with Maura Adshead, Palgrave, 2009); Irish Protestant Identities (co-eds with Mervyn Busteed and Frank Neal, Manchester University Press, 2008). Professor Tonge is a former Chair and President of the Political Studies Association of the UK, he is Professor of Politics at the University of Liverpool. Dr Maire Braniff is the author of Integrating the Balkans: Conflict Resolution and the Impact of EU Expansion. She is Lecturer in Sociology at the University of Ulster. Thomas Hennessey's books include Britain's Korean War: Cold War Diplomacy, Strategy and Security 1950-53; Hunger Strike: Margaret Thatcher's Battle with the IRA: 1980-1981; Spooks: the Unofficial History of MI5; The Evolution of the Troubles 1970-72. He is Professor of Modern British and Irish History at Canterbury Christ Church University, Kent. James W. McAuley has previously taught at Nottingham Polytechnic, Staffordshire Polytechnic and St. Mary's College, University of Surrey. His main areas of interest and research are political sociology, political violence and the state. Currently his main teaching responsibilities are introductory sociology, the Individual, Politics and the State and Popular Culture. He is Professor of Sociology and Irish Studies at Huddersfiled University. Dr Sophie Whiting is the author of Spoiling the Peace: Dissident Republicanism in Northern Ireland. She is Lecturer in Politics at the University of Liverpool.
Introduction ; 1. 'Never, never, never, never': the DUP 1971-2003 ; 2. The DUP Says Yes ; 3. Who Are the Modern Members? ; 4. Changing Discourses ; 5. Britishness, Identity and Belonging ; 6. Still for God and Ulster? Religion and Faith ; 7. Electoral Politics ; 8. Women and the DUP: The 'Backbone of the Party' ; Conclusion ; List of Interviewees and Focus Groups