Towards a poetics of hagiographic narration

The first book-length study of the Scottish Legendary (late 14th c.), the only extant collection of saints’ lives in the vernacular from medieval Scotland, scrutinises the dynamics of hagiographic narration, its implicit assumptions about literariness, and the functions of telling the lives of the saints. The fifty saints’ legends are remarkable for their narrative art: the enjoyment of reading the legends is heightened, while didactic and edifying content is toned down. Focusing on the role of the narrator, the depiction of the saintly characters, their interiority, as well as temporal and spatial parameters, it is demonstrated that the Scottish poet has adapted the traditional material to the needs of an audience versed in reading romance and other secular genres. The implications of the Scottish poet’s narrative strategies are analysed also with respect to the Scottishness of the legendary and its overall place in the hagiographic landscape of late medieval Britain.

Editors: Willy Maley and Andrew Murphy

This book explores, from a variety of critical perspectives, the playwright's place in Scotland and the place of Scotland in his work. The influence of Scotland on William Shakespeare's writing, and later on his reception, is set alongside the dramatic effects that Shakespeare's work had on the development of Scottish literature. The Shakespeare's work of Scottish literature stretches from the Globe to globalisation, and from Captain Jamy and King James to radical productions at the Citizens' Theatre in Glasgow. Shakespeare have strong Scottish connections by virtue of his theatre company's being brought under the sponsorship of the Scottish king James VI immediately after his accession to the English throne in 1603. Jonathan Goldberg and Alvin Kernan have traced the impact of royal patronage on Shakespeare's work after the Union, finding Scottish themes at play not just in Macbeth, but also in Cymbeline, King Lear, Hamlet, and in other plays. Then, the book outlines some of the issues and problems raised by Scotland and Scottish history for English readers in the last decade of Elizabeth's reign. Shakespeare wrote his English plays in Elizabeth's reign and his British plays after 1603, though Henry V, first performed in 1599, might be regarded as a proto-British play. Unlike Henry V, Shakespeare's most English play, where national identity is of the essence, in Macbeth, Scotland is a blot on the landscape. Shakespeare's political drama moves from a sense of England and Scotland as independent kingdoms into an alignment with the views of Unionist King James.

Catholicism, gender and ethnicity in nineteenth-century Scotland

This book examines the changing nature of Catholicism in modern Scotland by placing a significant emphasis on women religious. It highlights the defining role they played in the transformation and modernisation of the Catholic Church as it struggled to cope with unprecedented levels of Irish migration. The institutions and care-networks that these women established represented a new age in social welfare that served to connect the church with Scotland's emerging civil society. The book examines how the church reacted to liberalism, legislative reform, the rise of evangelicalism and the continued growth of Irish migration between the late 1820s and the late 1850s. A mutual aversion to the Irish and a loyalty to nation and state inspired a recusant and ultramontane laity to invest heavily in a programme of church transformation and development. The recruitment of the Ursulines of Jesus, the first community of nuns to return to Scotland since the Reformation, is highlighted as a significant step towards legitimising Catholic respectability. The book focuses on the recruitment and influence of women religious. It also focuses on the issue of identity by considering how gender and ethnicity influenced the development of these religious communities and how this was connected with the broader campaign to transform Catholic culture in Scotland. The book also examines the development of Catholic education in Scotland between the late 1840s and 1900 and prioritises the role played by women religious in this process.

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Texts and contexts

The 2000s were a decade that saw many important Scottish films make big splashes in critical and commercial terms, the decade ending with Peter Mullan's acclaimed film Neds. The field of Scottish cinema studies was more or less born with Scotch Reels (1982), a collection of essays edited by Colin McArthur. The collection sought to unearth a history of cinematic representations of Scotland and to argue for the need for more indigenous production. Scottish cinema studies is now a field that is very much alive and vibrant, as evidenced by a recent wave of book-length publications such as the latest anthology on Scottish cinema, Scottish Cinema Now (2009). This book seeks to add to this growing tide of scholarship and in so doing assist with the project of subjecting the works of Scottish cinema to sustained close analysis and historicization. The central context of this book is the production landscape surrounding Scottish cinema over the last thirty years. After Local Hero and Trainspotting, Mrs Brown ranks as the most prominent indigenously produced contemporary Scottish film in terms of both popularity and critical prestige. The book explores Lynne Ramsay's career after Morvern Callar telling us about the optimistic narratives presented by Scottish cinema historians. The book also concerns with a figure who has been less successful in critical terms than his peers even if his films, particularly Young Adam and Hallam Foe, have resonated more with audiences than Red Road, Orphans or Neds.

Banal activism, electioneering and the politics of irrelevance

This book is an ethnographic study of devolution and politics in Scotland, as well as of party-political activism more generally. It explores how Conservative Party activists who had opposed devolution and the movement for a Scottish Parliament during the 1990s attempted to mobilise politically following their annihilation at the 1997 General Election. The book draws on fieldwork conducted in Dumfries and Galloway – a former stronghold for the Scottish Tories – to describe how senior Conservatives worked from the assumption that they had endured their own ‘crisis’ in representation. The material consequences of this crisis included losses of financial and other resources, legitimacy and local knowledge for the Scottish Conservatives. The book ethnographically describes the processes, practices and relationships that Tory Party activists sought to enact during the 2003 Scottish and local government elections. Its central argument is that, having asserted that the difficulties they faced constituted problems of knowledge, Conservative activists cast to the geographical and institutional margins of Scotland became ‘banal’ activists. Believing themselves to be lacking in the data and information necessary for successful mobilisation during Parliamentary elections, local Tory Party strategists attempted to address their knowledge ‘crisis’ by burying themselves in paperwork and petty bureaucracy. Such practices have often escaped scholarly attention because they appear everyday and mundane, and are therefore less noticeable. Bringing them into view analytically has important implications for socio-cultural anthropologists, sociologists and other scholars interested in ‘new’ ethnographic objects, including activism, bureaucracy, democracy, elections and modern knowledge practices.

The Last King of Scotland and post-imperial Scottish cinema

6 Not British, Scottish?: The Last King of Scotland and post-imperial Scottish cinema Idi Amin (Forest Whitaker): You are British? James Garrigan (James McAvoy): Well, I’m Scottish . . . Scottish . . . Idi Amin: Scottish? Why didn’t you say so? (Dialogue exchange from The Last King of Scotland) With a number of major awards to its name – including an Oscar and a Golden Globe – and an international box office return second only to Trainspotting, The Last King of Scotland is one of the most high-profile films that Scotland has seen. Despite this, it has only

in Scottish cinema

1 Scotland’s Catholic Church before emancipation For much of the period between the Reformation and the nineteenth century, Catholicism existed on the periphery of Scottish society, its survival fraught with uncertainty in an atmosphere of institutionalised anti-Catholicism and extreme poverty. The Scottish Mission, a term used to describe the Catholic Church in Scotland between 1603 and 1878, when it had no formal governing hierarchy, had been thrown into complete disarray by the Reformation. Those who remained Catholics went underground, keeping their

in Creating a Scottish Church
Macbeth’s national identity in the eighteenth century

One of the best-known features of Macbeth is its alias. Such is the notoriety of the misadventure apparently visited upon those foolhardy enough to utter ‘Macbeth’ within a theatre, that it is frequently referred to as ‘the Scottish play’, even by those without a superstitious bent. 1 The adoption of this moniker, like the avoidance of walking under

in Shakespeare and Scotland

Along with the suffrage campaign, women's liberation activism is one of the most renowned aspects of women's political history. The women's liberation movement (WLM) has often been linked with the 'big city'. This is the first book-length account of the women's liberation movement in Scotland, which charts the origins and development of this important social movement of the post-1945 period. In doing so, it reveals the inventiveness and fearlessness of feminist activism, while also pointing towards the importance of considering the movement from the local and grassroots perspectives. This book has two central arguments. First, it presses for a more representative historiography in which material from other places outside of the large women's liberation centres are included. Second, it highlights that case studies not only enrich our knowledge about women's liberation but they also challenge the way the British movement has been portrayed by both participants and historians. The book commences with contextualising the subject and summarising recent research into the movement in the United Kingdom. It looks at the roots of the movement by offering portrayals of the women who went on to form women's liberation groups in Scotland. The book then analyses the phenomenon of 'consciousness-raising' (CR) and the part it had to play in the WLM's development. The focus then moves to exploring where, when and why women's liberation groups emerged. The campaigns taken up by the WLM were to defend abortion rights and campaign against violence against women.

Opportunity or exile?

Emigration from Scotland has always been very high. However, emigration from Scotland between the wars surpassed all records; more people emigrated than were born, leading to an overall population decline. This book examines emigration in the years between the two world wars of the twentieth century. Although personal persuasion remained the key factor in stimulating emigration, professional and semi-professional agents also played a vital part in generating and directing the exodus between the wars. Throughout and beyond the nineteenth century Scottish emigration was, in the public mind and public print, largely synonymous with an unwilling exodus from the highlands and islands. The book investigates the extent to which attitudes towards state-aided colonization from the highlands in the 1920s were shaped by the earlier experiences of highlanders and governments alike. It lays particular emphasis on changing and continuing perceptions of overseas settlement, the influence of agents and disparities between expectations and experiences. The book presents a survey of the exodus from lowland Scotland's fishing, farming and urbanindustrial communities that evaluates the validity of negative claims about the emigrants' motives vis-a-vis the well-publicized inducements offered through both official and informal channels. It scrutinizes the emigrants' expectations and experiences of continuity and change against the backdrop of over a century of large-scale emigration and, more specifically, of new initiatives spawned by the Empire Settlement Act. Barnardo's Homes was the first organization to resume migration work after the war, and the Canadian government supervision was extended from poor-law children to all unaccompanied juvenile migrants.