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Tuesday, March 31 • 12:00pm - 12:30pm
Kate Mazzotta: Stories from Belfast: Eight Weeks in Northern Ireland

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After thirty years of street conflict between the Protestant and Catholic communities, the Good Friday Agreements were signed in 1998. The paramilitaries were disbanded, and a new power sharing structure was created in Northern Ireland. However, the residents of Belfast are left with memories of The Troubles—most of which are traumatic in nature. Yet the city pushes forward with its re-imaging projects, attempting to recover from its history by funding positive, uplifting works of public art that offer a chance for reflection and reconciliation. / / Yet this leaves a question: you can re-image a city by painting over murals, but can you re-image people? These stories pull on my own experience working within Belfast, as I spoke to people with differing opinions on what re-imaging meant, and what reconciliation—and peace—looked like. Additionally, there was the question as to how to represent a culture: are Celtic knots enough to personify Catholic’s feelings of Irish-ness? Is the Titanic an appropriate symbol for the Protestant work ethic? Additionally, each person had a different vision of peace, and what peace meant in the 21st century context. / / After speaking to ex-prisoners, community leaders, politicians, and young college students on the streets, this project pulls on these stories and retells both their experiences and those of the researcher as an outsider to this changing social landscape.

avatar for Kate Mazzotta

Kate Mazzotta

Student: creative writing, Florida State University

Tuesday March 31, 2015 12:00pm - 12:30pm EDT
Civic Center - Meeting Room B - Ground Floor 505 West Pensacola Street, Tallahassee, FL 32301

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