Presentation on theme: "The Orange Order Fraternity formed 1795 in Northern Ireland"— Presentation transcript:
1 The Orange Order and British Protestant Ethnicity: A Comparative Perspective
2 The Orange Order Fraternity formed 1795 in Northern Ireland Stands for loyalty to British Crown & ProtestantismPolitical Protestantism, NOT evangelical Protestantism. More ethnic than religious.Associative cornerstone of British-Protestant ethnicity in several placesBritannic ethno-nationalistRapid international spread
3 ESRC ResearchFellowship focuses on dominant ethnicity and social changeIssue of how ethnic cores of nations deal with liberal modernity and globalisationOrange Order as the associational glue behind dominant ethnicity in N.I., Canada, W.C. ScotlandDevolution Programme Grant looks at Orange-UUP link in Northern Ireland
4 Main Research Questions What factors cause per capita Orange membership strength to rise and fall over time and across place? (social question)How effective is the Orange Order in determining policy change, and why does its power rise and fall over time and place? (political question)
5 Research MethodologyQuantitative: Compare Orange membership among Protestants with variables from census, police reports, history, polls. Over time and across county and ‘province’ (N.I., Scotland, Nfld., Ontario)Qualitative: Compare Orange resolutions and organised political activity over time and place. Look at class profile of elite and membership over time. Interviews.Sources: Previously unseen internal documents; census, polls, violence stats, valuation rolls, some newspapers
6 Current PresentationWill focus on quantitative research since that has been initial thrustHappy to answer technical and qualitative questions as well
7 Analysis of Variation in Membership Patterns International Patterns (v. Canada, Scotland)Variation over Time in Northern IrelandVariation by County in Northern IrelandInter-Fraternal Patterns (v. Masons, IOOF)Theories of ChangeResults of Statistical Analyses
16 Inter-County Patterns, N.I. Orangeism General decline since membership peak in early 1960’s (mid-Ulster), or 50’s (East)Height of the ‘Troubles’ ( ) boosted membership temporarily, as did Anglo-Irish Agreement and DrumcreeHowever, general trend is a steady declineUrban areas suffer heavier declines, even taking into account population flows.
17 International Orange Similarities All jurisdictions experience growth until the 1920’sAll decline in the Depression yearsAll experience growth after World War IIAll experience steady decline in recent decadesN.I; Scotland 1; Scotland 2 ; Ontario; Newfoundland
22 International Differences Membership decline sets in as early as the 1920’s in Canada and decline in the period is sharperMembership decline in the post-1960 period has been quicker in Canada, while Northern Ireland and Scotland have declined at similar steady rates
23 Inter-Fraternal Patterns Orange Order has withstood post-1970 declines better than Masonic NI2Inter-County Patterns in Masonic match those of Orange NI3
28 SummaryGreat deal of similarity in shape of historical patterns of membership across nations and fraternitiesGreat deal of difference between places and fraternities in terms of slope of rise/decline in membership
29 Theories of Fraternal Change Beito: Decline in 1920’s as welfare state emergesEmery: Decline in 1920’s or 30’s due to private insurance and expanded recreational optionsPutnam: Depression caused decline, WWII boosted membership. Differences in ‘Social Capital’ between Generations explains most of post-1960 decline.Culturalist: Decline of Protestant Religiosity (Bruce?), Decline of Loyalty to Crown, Decline of British-Protestant Ethnic Identity, Ecumenism
30 Preliminary Research: Qualitative Based on Interviews & ReportsLeaders and Rank-and-file members point to structural forcesBut nearly all admit cultural pressuresAlso speak of role of eventsInstitutional changes not seen as significant by members - though leaders think otherwiseQualitative evidence inconclusive
31 Preliminary Statistical Tests – Across County NI: Catholic Population is by far the most important determinant. Economic factors not important ( ). Denomination key: % RC and %Other Protestant increase membership; %Methodist and % Presbyterian strongly decrease it.
32 Quantitative Analysis: Scotland and Canada SCT: Catholic population most important determinant, as with NI case. Irish born population of fifty years ago is also very important. All other factors pale in comparison. (for )ONT: No strong factor - Irish Protestant population most powerful. Proportion Irish, French or Catholic has limited effect. ( )
34 ‘Some News columnists have written us off and even gloat over what they term “our demise.” Even one church paper joined in the glee. - Grand Master Gordon Keyes, 1970“As the population changed its opinions, we got less good press in the newspapers.” - Toronto Orangeman, 1999.
35 Preliminary Statistical Tests – Across Time Denominational balance (esp. rise of Methodism and Other Protestant sects) important duringOrangeism in N.I. responded to RC population growth until 1970, but not since thenPolitical events (Troubles, Peace Agreements, Drumcree) have been a factor in N.I. post-1970Rate of Protestant fatalities have had little impact in N.I. since 1970High-school education appears correlated with membership decline in Ontario duringStill more work needed in this and other areas
36 ConclusionOrangeism was a worldwide movement though strongest in Ulster and eastern CanadaOrangeism’s rise owed a lot to inter-ethnic conflict with a Catholic ethnie. Relatively Catholic counties in N.I. and Scotland have far more ‘Orange’ Protestants
37 Conclusion IIThe role of economic change is minimal during the period in all areasThe role of events is only truly important in N.I. – especially in the post-Troubles periodStrong evidence against ‘contact’ hypothesisNo real answer as to why Orangeism in declineEvidence appears to support Putnam thesis, though more work needed with respect to generation, as well as time-series analysis
38 Further Research Inclusion of 1971-2001 census data Time Series Analysis using Opinion polls from post-1969 periodExamination of Initiations, as well as Junior and Female trendsQualitative Research on Political Strength