This book collects some of the major essays by two of the leading authorities on the Northern Ireland conflict. It is unified by the theory of consociation, one of the most influential theories in the regulation of conflicts. The authors are critical exponents of the approach, and several chapters explain its attractions over alternative forms of conflict regulation. The book explains why Northern Ireland's national divisions have made the achievement of a consociational agreement particularly difficult. The issues raised in the book are crucial to a proper understanding of Northern Ireland's past and future, which, the authors argue, is likely to involve some type of consociational democracy, whether or not the one agreed to on Good Friday 1998. The issues addressed are not particular to Northern Ireland. They are relevant to a host of other divided territories, including Cyprus, Kossovo, Macedonia, Sri Lanka, Nigeria , and Afghanistan. The book is therefore vital reading not just for Northern Ireland specialists but for anyone interested in consociation and in the just and durable regulation of national and ethnic conflict.