Is social violence learned? By whom? When? Is it characteristic of certain groups, in certain social strata? Under what conditions? What are its personal and social costs? What do people expect to gain from it? What does it actually accomplish? When the long-lasting and unhealing sores that violence leaves are so counterproductive, why do people resort to it rather than to more peaceful alternatives? The civil conflict in Northern Ireland since 1968 presents opportunities as a locale in which to probe for more light on these significant questions. The area is small. The participants are highly literate and vocal.