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Professor of Sociology at the University of Ulster

April 26th, 2010

Area of Expertise: Law and Human Rights, Media, Minority Rights, Terrorism, War and Conflict
Geographical Expertise - Region: Europe
Geographical Expertise - Country: Northern Ireland
Language: English
Field of Work: Academia
City: Ulster
Country: UK
Continent: Europe


Bill Rolston Bill RolstonBill Rolston is Professor of Sociology at the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland. He has researched, written and lectured on Northern Ireland society, politics and culture over the last three decades, beginning with his doctorate from Queen’s University on community development and political conflict.

He is also a researcher with the Transitional Justice Institute at the University of Ulster and has published on issues of transitional justice in relation to Northern Ireland, in particular: truth recovery, memory and storytelling, the demobilization of ex-combatants, and the role of public inquiries.

His publications include ‘An Effective Mask for Terror’: Democracy, death squads and Northern Ireland, Crime, Law and Social Change; ‘Dealing with the Past: Pro-State Paramilitaries, Truth and Transition in Northern Ireland’, Human Rights Quarterly;  ‘Demobilization and Reintegration of Ex-Combatants: The Irish Case in International Perspective’, Social and Legal Studies; ‘The Burden of Memory: Victims, Storytelling and Resistance in Northern Ireland’, Memory Studies.

Beyond this, he is also an expert on the political wall murals of Northern Ireland and has been photographing this ephemeral art form for almost three decades. Photographs he has taken have been exhibited in the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. as well as Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. He has also given illustrated lectures on this subject on four continents. He is frequently interviewed in the media, both locally and internationally, on all of the issues mentioned above, as well as on racism and anti-racism in Northern Ireland. Recently such outlets have included ARTE in France and Radio Ulster and Ulster Television in Northern Ireland. Finally, he has experience as an election monitor in Cambodia, Bosnia-Herzogovina, Palestine and Lebanon.

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