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"The Irish and Other British Dilemmas"

Course of Our Times, Series V

VHS; U-Matic


Program Number

Date Aired
ca. 1971

30 min.

Britain's declining position as a great power was perhaps most dramatically exposed by the crisis of Northern Ireland in 1968. At that time, religious identification among the Irish remained intense; governmental authority was almost entirely in Protestant hands, and Catholics experienced severe discrimination. By 1969, Catholic resentment reached a fever pitch, leading to recurrent riots and killings. Within two years, Ireland was close to civil war, leaving Great Britain with three possible alternatives: complete withdrawal from Northern Ireland; union of the Ulster counties with the Irish Free State; or maintenance of Britain's protectorate status, using its temporary guardianship to effect political and economic reform. Plagued by its own domestic problems and declining international power, Great Britain no longer had sufficient strength or prestige to make its influence felt.

Recording Location
WGBH, Boston

1 VHS use copy [In Course of Our Times Collection, Box 2]
1 U-Matic copy [In Sachar Personal Papers, Box 29]