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Celtic Connections

Irish-Scottish Relations and the Politics of Culture


Edited By Willy Maley and Alison O'Malley-Younger

While a number of published works approach the shared concerns of Ireland and Scotland, no major volume has offered a sustained and up-to-date analysis of the cultural connections between the two, despite the fact that these border crossings continue to be politically suggestive. The current collection addresses this area of comparative critical neglect, focusing on writers, from Charles Robert Maturin to Liam McIlvanney, whose work offers insights into debates about identity and politics in these two neighbour nations, too often overwhelmed by connections with their larger neighbour, England.
The essays in this collection are distinct yet connected, and are designed to come together like the intricate cross-bars and precise patterning of the plaid to capture the complexity of the Celtic connections they address. They move from pre-history to postmodernism, from Gothic to Gaelic and from Macbeth to Marxism, incorporating gender and genre, and providing a detailed survey of responses to the Irish-Scottish paradigm.


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LAUREN CLARK Second Cities of Empire: Celtic Consumerism Exhibited


LAUREN CLARK Second Cities of Empire: Celtic Consumerism Exhibited Indulging in panoramic views provided from the camera obscura of his Outlook Tower, Patrick Geddes famously conceived of a macrocosmic outlook on Edinburgh’s regional planning: How can anyone understand this world, not to mention improve it, if he cannot even see it accurately to start with? We must re-educate our eyes so that we can first of all be in more ef fective visual contact with external reality […] every inhabitant from child to patriarch should strive to know what his region contains, not only its wealth of natural resources, scenic beauty, and heritage of culture but the opposite picture as well. (Boardman, 1944: 177–84) Less familiar is the fact that he also waxed sociological in a microcosmic observation made about the 1886 Edinburgh Industrial Exhibition of which he remarked ‘there can be no better standpoint for an intelligent survey of modern progress than that af forded by an international exhibition’ (Geddes, 1887: 1). Flanked on all sides by model villages, marquees and artificially constructed halls of a sometimes colonial, occasionally imperial and very often architecturally temporary and crude inclination, the layout of industrial, international and civic exhibitions in Glasgow and Edinburgh by the end of the nineteenth century seemed to be somewhat of a contrast with Geddes’ maxims of what town planners now brand ‘regional survey’. Indeed, by the arrival of the 1911 Scottish Exhibition, Geddes’ promises of progressive inspection and subtle sociological introspection appeared more contradictory still. With Scottish...

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