Young men as victims and perpetrators of violence in Northern Ireland: A qualitative analysis

J Reilly, OT Muldoon, C Byrne

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This article explores issues of masculinity and violence in the lives of young men in disadvantaged areas in Northern Ireland. Qualitative data were collected in four focus groups, one group of young men from the Catholic community, one group of young men from the Protestant community, one group of community representatives, and one group of Young Offenders (N = 28). Themes were extracted from the data using a grounded approach. Results indicate that social disadvantage is fundamental to experiences of violence and that young men understand the costs and benefits of a masculine identity that incorporates a capacity for violence. Discussion suggests that initiatives to reduce violent behavior should be compatible with socially and culturally acceptable constructions of masculinity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)469-484
JournalJournal of Social Issues
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2004


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