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Scotland 2014 and Beyond – Coming of Age and Loss of Innocence?


Klaus Peter Müller

This book examines Scotland from a great variety of international and disciplinary perspectives, offering viewpoints from ordinary citizens as well as experts in culture, history, literature, sociology, politics, the law, and the media. The texts investigate the mental processes, dispositions, and activities that have been involved in past and present discussions about Scottish independence, freedom, equality, justice, and the creation of a fair society. Such discussions have been shaped by specific values, ideologies, class or personal interests and objectives as well as by specific ways of telling their stories. These are analysed together with the European, global, and democratic dimensions of Scotland, in order to find answers to the question how coming of age might be achieved today.
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“What Scotland had, and now has not”: James Hogg’s The Brownie of Bodsbeck – Regional and National Identities in the Nineteenth Century: Valentina Bold (Glasgow)


Valentina Bold is editor of The Brownie of Bodsbeck (1818), set during the ‘Killing Times’ of the late seventeenth-century Covenanting period in Scotland. This is to be published in its complete form, for the first time since the first edition, in 2015 as part of the Stirling / South Carolina edition of the Complete Works of James Hogg. In this essay, she considers aspects of The Brownie which assert moral and religious identity from a strongly regional perspective, in a way which is very relevant to the 2014 independence referendum.

James Hogg’s The Brownie of Bodsbeck deals explicitly with the themes considered in this volume, namely a terrible regional ‘loss of innocence’ and a national ‘coming of age’ in the face of adversity. Published in 1818, and set in the last decades of the seventeenth century, The Brownie offers a strongly localised perspective on the troubled period prior to the union of the parliaments. It presents Scotland as a nation asserting its religious, moral, and political identity, at great personal and social costs, and within the context of specific, topographically located, remembered events. This is a nation based on common experience, if oppositional politics. In considering The Brownie of Bodsbeck during a period of potential constitutional change, albeit in a non-violent context, I want to focus on aspects of the text which have particular meaning to my, and Hogg’s, present: his notion of the historical and its continuing relevance; his pre-occupation with Borders’ topography, and his conscious use...

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