Imagining independence : some modern Scottish novels
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Imagining Independence: some modern Scottish novels is concerned with fictional depictions of a future independent Scotland, written in the course of the twentieth century, and possible relationships between such works and the broader political world which they seek to portray. The thesis brings together for the first time a group of twentieth-century popular novels (listed below) which imagine the achievement of Scottish independence and which, more often than not, prompt the reader to relate fictional possibilities to actual events in the political landscape. The principal concern within Imagining Independence is less to provide close stylistic appraisal than to demonstrate recurring thematic continuities (such as the employment of violence to gain political ends, and questions relating to leadership qualities supposed to be lacking in certain areas of modern Scottish politics) among a group of popular novels. To date, these issues have received little or no academic attention. This thesis looks at how they both react to and anticipate historical events during the century which saw the establishment of the Scottish Parliament. The ten primary texts studied are: John Connell, David Go Back (1935) Charles Hendry Dand, Scotching the Snake (1958) Alasdair Mair, The Douglas Affair (1966) Douglas Hurd & Andrew Osmond, Scotch on the Rocks (1971) Michael Sinclair, The Dollar Covenant (1973) Antonia Fraser, The Wild Island (1978) Ross Laidlaw, The Lion is Rampant (1979) William Paul, The Lion Rampant (1989) Michael Shea, State of the Nation (1997) Terry Houston, The Wounded Stone (1998)
Thesis, MPhil Master of Philosophy
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