In his book, War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning, the veteran war correspondent and former divinity student Chris Hedges warned us that:
‘States at war silence their own authentic and humane culture. When this destruction is well advanced they find the lack of critical and moral restraint useful in the campaign to exterminate the culture of their opponents. By destroying authentic culture – that which allows us to question and examine ourselves and our society – the state erodes the moral fabric.’
RTE’s groundbreaking documentary on Collusion has already become part of the currency of a seemingly unbreakable media and political narrative ‘on dealing with the past’. The ‘vault’ of secrets confronts all sides with a moment of decision: to acknowledge that any transformation is contingent – not only on an opening to the past – but on a long overdue recognition that public violence in (y)our name closes down our intimate realms of ethical sensibility, truthful language, culture, and spirit. What’s left with which to cultivate the emergence of conditions for a civil peace?
I am a lecturer in sustainable development and governance at the School of Law, Queens University Belfast. I also conduct work at United Nations negotiations on the environment for the International Institute for Sustainable Development.
My book on the attention economy and mindfulness as commons was published by Routlege in June 2017. See A Political Economy of Attention, Mindfulness and Consumerism: Reclaiming the Mindful Commons (Routledge Studies in Sustainability)
My research interests include consumerism, green politics and the economy. I locate myself firmly to the left of the political spectrum. I write in a personal capacity.
Born in Donegal, I was raised in Derry and now reside in Belfast with my family.